A Baldwin development: Clavin withdraws
The Clavin Caves, perhaps?
After pressure from revitalization advocates, business leaders and local residents, Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin backed out of plans to impose a moratorium on development in Baldwin, Inwood and North Lawrence .
Clavin announced in a press release Wednesday that the city would withdraw the moratoriums, which were set to go to a public hearing next week. Instead, according to the statement, the city council had drawn up “an alternative proposal” on how to handle development in these communities.
The alternative would eliminate the “design review board” the city had previously established as part of its zoning, instead giving the city council itself “a more comprehensive role” in the project review process. In addition, each “significant development project” would have to undergo a more thorough environmental review before being approved. The city has not defined which projects would fall under this requirement.
Clavin said in a statement that the proposal “is a commitment to residents that we will facilitate City Council’s consideration of reasonable development proposals in a timely and efficient manner,” adding that the city had a “direct accountability to residents. to do what is best for America’s largest township to consider reasonable development while protecting the environment for future generations.
Clavin did not respond to The Point’s requests for comment. It’s unclear if any part of the New Town’s review process would come before the upcoming election in which City Councilman Anthony D’Esposito is a candidate for the GOP nomination to replace Kathleen Rice in Congress.
While advocates and local elected officials said they were pleased that the moratorium proposals had been withdrawn, they were not completely reassured that the issues had been resolved. A press conference that had been scheduled for Thursday by the Baldwin Civic Association, the Baldwin Chamber of Commerce, local advocates and elected officials, including Nassau County Legis. Debra Mule and Assembl. Judy Griffin, will still go ahead as planned but now with a slightly different agenda.
“I think it’s a win for the Baldwin community, that they put pressure on the city and stood up for themselves and I’m glad I was a part of that advocacy,” Mule told The Point. “But we always have the rush to say, ‘Now it’s time to get to work.'”
And Mule defined the city’s “responsibility” differently than Clavin.
“The city’s responsibility is to listen to the people of Baldwin and put forward what they’ve been asking for, what they’ve been asking for for decades, to revitalize their downtown,” Mule said.
Griffin told The Point she doesn’t buy the city’s argument against a design review board and is worried about what the city’s alternative plan would mean for Baldwin.
“As far as I am concerned, this reversal is just a political game. I see it as another delaying tactic and another power play on their part,” Griffin said. “It’s a shame they’re using Baldwin’s people.”
—Randi F. Marshall @RandiMarshall
Subject of discussion
Jamming Zeldin as Cuomo’s man?
Almost 11 years ago, then-state senator Lee Zeldin praised the then-governor. Andrew M. Cuomo at a press conference in Freeport — a videotaped event that at least two of Zeldin’s rivals in the GOP primary race for governor now find helpful. The clip was from an event where the Democratic Governor and Senate Republicans claimed victory for imposing a two-year moratorium on state saltwater fishing license fees.
In retrospect, now-Rep. Shirley’s Zeldin might have gone overboard with the kind of over-the-top flattery that can permeate the most bipartisan state ceremonies. He thanked the first-term governor “for your unwavering vision, leadership and commitment to Long Island, not just the fishing community but to all of us, the taxpayers… And putting all politics aside, I would honestly say that if you were in the White House right now, our nation would be in a better place today than it is.
Of course, the president then was Barack Obama, so Zeldin didn’t cross any risky partisan lines in flattering Cuomo like this.
The comment is now making the rounds in Republican circles at the behest of rival candidate Andrew Giuliani – just as his primary ballot petition signatures, and those of other insurgent candidates, are being challenged by Zeldin, who is the party’s nominee in the June 28 primary. .
Giuliani and candidate Rob Astorino, the former Westchester County leader who opposed Cuomo in 2014, have sought to tie Zeldin unfavorably to the scandal-scarred ex-governor they earlier prepared against to show up this year.
Campaign strategists say it is standard fare for insurgents to seek ground and draw attention against a favorite as they seek to avoid elimination from the ballot. Candidate Harry Wilson did not play the Cuomo card, but said Zeldin was simply afraid of a primary because he lacked grassroots recognition and support.
But so far, Giuliani, the son of former New York City mayor and Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, seems to display the greatest appetite for throwing campaign stink bombs.
Namely, the younger Giuliani tweeted an attack on Jack Haggerty’s employment in the petition process as rendering Zeldin “unqualified to be governor.” Haggerty, a recognized expert in the process, served time for a theft case involving Mike Bloomberg’s mayoral campaign in 2009.
Giuliani said, “One of the Republican candidates is using a convicted felon to lead his Election Integrity team. I will not support fraud or corruption, whether it comes from Andrew Cuomo or Lee Zeldin!
But Republican Party and Zeldin campaign officials told The Point on Wednesday that Haggerty was working for the party organization, not the candidate’s campaign. Other vigorous internal Republican clashes are underway in other states. In Ohio, for example, US Senate candidate JD Vance reignited the debate when he said the federal government should not do “much” about the war in Ukraine. One of Vance’s main opponents in the GOP, Mike Gibbons, has said he will “crush” Russia with economic sanctions and supports arming Ukrainians “to the teeth.”
But in New York’s Republican scrum for an outsider gubernatorial nomination, the divisions aren’t even that ideological.
So far, it’s all about negatives, numbers, positioning and who does what to whom – and the usual question at this stage of what a future “party unity” rally might look like.
—Dan Janison @Danjanison
For more cartoons visit www.newsday.com/nationalcartoons
The state’s Cannabis Control Board just approved conditional licenses for three Long Island companies to begin cultivating the substance. This made The Point wonder: did the towns or villages where these farms are located agree to sell marijuana or not?
In other words, could the community benefit from farm-to-table products?
Although the farm business is not allowed to get directly involved in retail sales, the local politics are interesting. Communities, for example, may house greenhouses or outdoor fields to grow the plant, but not dispensaries or parlors to buy and consume it.
This state of affairs is certainly possible on Long Island, which is home to plenty of farmland to the east as well as dozens of cities or towns that have pulled out of sales under the new marijuana legalization law.
Two of the three newly licensed growers, East End Flower Farm Ltd. and Plant Connection Inc., did not respond to The Point or decline to share the actual location of their farm due to a lack of finalized sites and concerns about their plants being stolen.
The third, Route 27 Hopyard, owned by Ryan Andoos and Mark Carroll, will have a farm in the town of Brookhaven – which has opted to allow marijuana sales, despite passing zoning rules last year that set out certain restrictions.
Andoos suggested to The Point that most of the farm’s crops are likely to stay on Long Island and even a lot on Brookhaven itself, although it won’t sell directly to consumers.
He said he was not surprised that many LI jurisdictions had “excluded” themselves from pot sales, given the lingering stigma on the issue and the ability to watch and see how the legalization regime works around New York.
Jurisdictions can opt “in” later, and possession is legal either way. Andoos thinks some localities on Long Island will watch for a while, then maybe open their arms more to the weed: “There will definitely be a change of heart.”
—Marc Chiusano @mjchiusano