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Lawsuit Against New Village Dismissed

Pontieri says plans for demolition will be made in around 10 days.

Not even 48 hours after the Village Elections, the halting the much-discussed at the Four Corners has been dismissed.

The Patchogue Village Facebook page has announced the news, stating that Justice Paul Baisley has ruled that the Village prevailed in the case and has dismissed the lawsuit.

Tritec's was in April 2011 for 291 apartments, 46,000 square feet of retail space and 18,000 square feet of office space to be placed at the Four Corners intersection in Patchogue Village.

The plan has been met with both support and dissent from Patchogue Village residents, resulting in a heated election campaign primarily divided among the issue.

The lawsuit was filed by a number of local business owners, including of the , , and Elisabeth McGuire, who was one of the mayor candidates running in opposition of the plan.

Kevin Brosnahan, an attorney working for those that filed the lawsuit, said that the plaintiffs do intend to appeal the decision as they feel the Judge's decision doesn't reach the merits of their argument.

"Respectfully to the judge, I disagree, I believe on the merits my clients would prevail," Brosnahan told Patch Thursday.

Village attorney Brian Egan said that such an appeal would not stop the New Village plans from moving forward.

"If they decided to undertake that very expensive endeavor, I am confident based on the judge's decision that the appeal is meritless," Egan said.

Patchogue Village Mayor Paul Pontieri told Patch Thursday morning that discussions with Tritec Real Estate Company have resumed, and that plans for scheduling the demolition will be made over the next 10 days.

"Tuesday's election was at that point was the highlight of the week," Pontieri said. "Add this to it, it's been a wonderful week. Just on a personal level, the amount of time put into this development is what we need."

Pontieri also said that the judge's decision was officially made on Tuesday, but the court's office initially held it back from release as to not affect the election.

The full documentation of the decision is attached in the PDF section.

This is a breaking news story and will be updated.

Update 3:41 p.m.: Added the PDF of the judge's decision, comments from plaintiff's attorney Kevin Brosnahan and Village Attorney Brian Egan.

Update 5:55 p.m.: Added information on when decision was made.

John Bogack March 23, 2012 at 01:58 AM
Judy you have been making yourself clear. But it is time to move forward on the Tritec plan. As Jo Miller says there may have been many who opposed the project. but they did not vote if that was the case. What we do know is that many who did support did vote and by doing so created majority support for the plan as approved once before by a majority vote of the Trustees. That is what happened. It's called democracy. But where I do agree with you is that your voice should be heard. In fact let's be allied where we have common cause. Both of us want to make sure that New Village turns out for the best. Let's both keep working on making that happen. One way I am going to move that along is that next Monday at the Trustee meeting I am again going to advocate for televised meetings. It's a good idea to promote accountability in our village government. You too have advocated for the same cause. Let's stand together and make sure that the movement foward for democracy in our village keeps moving along. And everyone else who feels the same please join the cause. This idea is long overdue. The time for change is now.
Judy Pepenella March 23, 2012 at 02:44 AM
Jo, I fully agree with you. We do need a master plan that should be developed with the entire community in mind, not just Main Street. I would like to quote you on this remark. "The scrutiny is the responsibility of the residents as is voting." I always tell people your vote is your voice, use it or be quiet. I think our remark is a lot nicer! " ) I have been working odd hours and have not been able to get to the meetings. However, I must change my hours to make sure I can. I have already informed the people I work with that my Monday Schedules will change to allow my ability to attend the meetings. I do plan on attending as many meetings as I can.
Judy Pepenella March 23, 2012 at 02:59 AM
John, It is sad that people gave up and did not come out and vote their views. I heard late today that people were upset with the apartments, but did not like how both sides ran their races so they decided not to vote. A very foolish action. I am going to be at the next meeting and at as many as I can. My work schedule is such that I have a heavy plate on Mondays; however, I am going to be at the next meeting and look forward to meeting you and working with anyone whose end goal is to help the residents know what is going on in Village Hall. Some of my ideas (many of which have been discussed by others) more open communication, posted minutes to all the meetings, televised meetings - at best video tape them and post them on the website, a master plan that incorporates the voices of citizens and businesses in the community, a hands on ethics review board, the laws being applied more efficiently and equally to all and dealing with those that break them accordingly. These are just a few of the ideas I have and have seen on these boards. I firmly believe that this Village is a diamond in the rough. With a little help from the citizens and a cooperative board, we could have a really beautiful gem.
Mike Higgins III March 23, 2012 at 09:24 AM
Judy, In the days leading up to the election, you posted a "call to action" on your Facebook page that solicited residents and non-residents of the village to help get out the vote for your candidate. In it, you called Paul Pontieri a "liberal tyrant mayor." I just would like you to elucidate what Mayor Pontieri has done that can be construed as "liberal" and "tyrannical." You know, since you only deal in facts, let's see them. I'll remind you that this election showed that Paul did have community support for these plans. Where's the tyranny there? Remember this is democracy. Secondly, I'd like to remind you that name calling and painting people with broad strokes might earn a few political points at the national and state level, but at this level it's always important to remember that these men and women who run for office and are elected by us and they are our neighbors. They are real people who live and work and care about this village. Perhaps they don't share the same vision of it as you, but surely there's a more constructive way to get things done than name calling. I think it's a good thing that you will start attending meetings. Perhaps you'll learn that the men and women who serve us are human beings who are doing what they think is right for the people of this village. There's nothing tyrannical about it.
Living in the Village March 23, 2012 at 11:39 AM
Before we go forward with any other projects - why can't we get Mascot Dock fixed. Can someone enlighten me please ?
Chip Austin Hunter March 23, 2012 at 11:53 AM
Perfectly put John. Well stated from all aspects. There will be many things we have to work together on to make the transition safe and beneficial for all. It's so easy to be angry and counter productive but now that the majority of the village voted to keep this all moving and the Judge has ruled as well, why not just come together and work to make it the best it can be. I look at some of these comments (especially the inflammatory ones from people with bags on their heads or that have no pictures, made up screen names or just initials .. and they seem to be the instigators continuing to be negative and vent anger.. luckily we outnumber those that go that route.. so we need to ignore it and move forward as you said. Thanks for your comments! Its people like you and David that are the assets helping Patchogue move forward and get even better.
feduponbay March 23, 2012 at 12:12 PM
My guess is lombardis needs more parking. I want to ask this same question at the next board meeting, it's a disgrace nothing has been done and to top it off they gave away the floating docks.
Al 17 March 23, 2012 at 12:16 PM
Feduponbay: Of course you must go by the election results. Its irrelevant how many residents voted for two reasons: 1-if they actually cared, they would have voted. You could argue that the 800+ people out of 11k are the only ones who didn't want it as the vote was clearly a referendum on the project. Its hard to imagine that anyone so opposed to the project sat home.2-even if they did sit home, the percentage of those who did vote is a sampling of the residents sentiment. Its a reflective ratio.
Karen Ferb March 23, 2012 at 12:30 PM
Re Mascot Dock repairs: We haven't received the FEMA money. Trustee Hilton addressed this issue on Patch on February 17.
James March 23, 2012 at 12:45 PM
On tri-tec's website there is a youtube video of the Mayor and Owner of Tri-tec speaking about how important the hotel is to this project and what having a hotel on the four corners shows about the progress of patchogue. too bad they couldnt follow through on their promise or at least wait a little longer to get the true mixed use needed in this community. When I bought my home in patchogue 1 year ago and I pondered what patchogue needed to continue its progress, another apartment complex did not come to mind. The argument that an apartment complex in the middle of town will improve the community is flawed. 1) Have the other apartment complexes in the area revitalized the downtown? 2) Heatherwood is within walking distance to main street, has it revitalized the community? 3) Tiffany Apartments are within walking distance from the downtown, has it revitalized the community? 4) Rider Avenue apartments are within a short walk to main street, has it revitalized the community? 5) Maplewood Apartments are within a short walk to main street, has that building revitalized the community? 6) have the owners of these buildings began renovating them to keep up with the increased demand for high end apartments in patchogue so they can demand higher rents? My wife said it best this morning, " I moved to this area to get away from big apartment complexes. If I wanted to look a big apartment complexes i would have stayed in Queens. Why does this stuff keep following me?"
feduponbay March 23, 2012 at 01:07 PM
explain why every municipality including the one I work for has made the repairs to their facilities for the residents. We made the repairs so fast the beach was open for labor day. Please explain to the boat owners why the marina side is not open. The dock on that side is fine as well as the pilings. Oh thats right they gave away the docks to a political contributor as well as leasing the parking lot to a political contributor.. At the very least the marina side could have been utilized for the boat owners. Sitting around waiting for FEMA money is not acceptable to me...
feduponbay March 23, 2012 at 01:15 PM
James, please come to the next board meeting and voice your concerns, as should the 900 or so people who voted against this. 900 concerned residents at every board meeting will have them squirming under the table.
James March 23, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Everyone agrees that something new needs to be build at the four corners. However, this project is much bigger than the four corners. A five story apartment building will now strech from the four corners up to Reese's pub, down lake to the firehouse and down to the back of the Brick House. This is a large project. You will be able to see it from the corner of N. Ocean & Roe Blvd, and from S. Ocean Middle School. Once its built, there are no do overs. it will remain unchanged as an apartment complex for generations. If 5 years from now the apartment buildings aren't working out as planned, there will be no basis to change it or scale it back. i think patchogue village deserves something a little more innovative than an apartment complex.
Dogpatch March 23, 2012 at 07:02 PM
What about the asbestos in the Sweezey's building? It is common knowledge that place is full of asbestos. Has Tritec or the prior owner removed these materials? If so I hope the village can provide proper documentation to back this up prior to scheduling demolition.
Judy Pepenella March 23, 2012 at 07:03 PM
Mike I am an involved citizen & resident of the Village. I want to see true & value added improvements here. I still live here & do not want to move out of the community I choose to live in almost 20 years ago. Yes, as a resident of the Village of Patchogue, I did post a call to action to my friends, both in the Village & in the Patchogue area (who are affected by what goes on in the Village). I asked them to come & listen to the candidates at the debate; then make their own decision if they want to help get out the vote. Several of my friends came to the debates. Those who helped get out the vote live in either the Village or Town of Patchogue & do business here with the residents. My view of the mayor is my own opinion from my own interactions with Village Hall (and the lack of responsiveness to a resident requests and/or questions) & the one-on-one discussions I have had with many residents. I walked several parts of the Village reaching out to fellow residents to get to get them involved with the election. I did not support any candidate when I went door to door; I was walking around to ALL homes on a voter registration drive. One of 3 posts
gayle smith March 23, 2012 at 07:12 PM
There is nowhere to voice a problem or concern...and for years I have made phone calls,which went unanswered or the worker seemed annoyed. Maybe there could be a new village site added so that if there is an issue it could be addressed promptly,abd without fear of retaliation....maybe a facebook page for each department?...i dont know the answer,but something like that could be helpful,although a little more work for village employee! Things as simple as garbage dangling in trees on main street,and rusty dangerous guard.rails by the fields where kids play....any suggestions on how to get issues resolved would help!
Judy Pepenella March 23, 2012 at 07:19 PM
The simple fact about ALL elections...they are won by the one that gets out the most votes. That is a simple political fact. This complex is going forward and we will have to work with what ever comes. That is another simple fact. Forget about who donated to whom…it is done and we need to move forward. My concern overall goal is simple: Community involvement in the future of our Village. All residents need to come out to Village meetings OR petition Village Hall with letters and/or emails about their interests and concerns. I am not referring to petitions to stop things from happening, but petition in writing their concerns about issues in the Village. Communication is a two way street. I would like to see more communication on the Village website with respect to meeting minutes and facts about upcoming decisions so the village residents can become more informed before the issue "hits" the Patch or the Advance.
Judy Pepenella March 23, 2012 at 07:19 PM
Many of the residents I spoke with said they would not speak aloud as they feared the Mayor and/or Village hall would come down on them. Others told me they were not going to vote because they felt it didn't matter. They said the felt the Mayor and his friends would come out in numbers to get him elected and there was no reason to fight this anymore. Thomas Jefferson stated "When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty." They feared speaking up and that is tyranny - this situation needs to be changed so all voices are heard in Village Hall. To use name calling to "win points" is not my goal. I stated my opinion of the situation as I see it. As you stated, these are real people and may not share my vision or views. So are those individuals stating their views and visions of the town. You may not agree with my remark, but I still changes need to be made to correct things in Village Hall. One of the most important and scary things I learned is many people didn't even know about the election or the full plans for the 4 Corners. Many people I spoke with thought it was still going to be a hotel & department store, not apartments. That is a sad statement of the lack of communication between the residents AND the Village Hall. Several people actually thought I was pulling their leg about the apartments. They felt that the mayor and trustees would not build something like that in the Village. Second of 3 posts
Judy Pepenella March 23, 2012 at 07:28 PM
Gayle, I too have called to ask questions or get help on an issue. The only thing I received back was an attitude. No one has returned any of my calls or emails. That is not a good thing. I like the idea of a citizens review board or a citizens complaint board that can help address issues to the board at meetings and at the departmental level. A facebook page for these issues to be posted is a good idea as well. When a resident does post an issue or question and two things can happen. One a fellow resident can say...'that happened to me and I did this or that'...thus freeing up the Village Hall and creating an open discussion between residents or a representative of the various departments could chime in and give more details to the laws and/or actions that can be taken. A great idea to create a open forum of communication between the residents AND the village!!
Rich Stevens March 23, 2012 at 07:48 PM
Gayle, I share your sentiments. We have six Village Trustees and I am going to chose one of them to contact when a problem arises. The Board of Trustees meets twice a month, so any problem that we report should be addressed at the next Village Board Meeting. The Trustee's first responsibilty is to represent the village resident, and should be addressing our concerns. Lets hold them responsible make them take action on our concerns, and if not we have elections to replace them. We should have documentation that they are contacted, so lets use the Trustee's village email, since the Village must save all emails that it receives.
Jacqueline March 23, 2012 at 08:03 PM
There are a large number of business owners and commercial property owners in the Village that are unhappy with this project. Where is the consideration for them? Obviously, they are greatly invested in our community too.
Been Here a Long Time March 23, 2012 at 08:09 PM
Judy Pepenella has way too much time on her hands.
gayle smith March 23, 2012 at 08:34 PM
Why does every comment have to be repled to with a remark like this? Come on...you are only proving her point...ive never heatd of sore winners! Can we just all act civilized? You too are on here arent you?
Judy Pepenella March 23, 2012 at 08:45 PM
I need to amend this note. Today I sent a note to Village Hall after just after posting this remark and received a callback and response to my emails. I am grateful for the response and hope this is an example of things to come. @Been her a long time... Sorry but you feel someone who loves their home enough to stand up for it has "too much time on their hands". I will continue to comment, reach out and fight the CORRECT fight and strive to find solutions to the problems and bring change that is beneficial to all.
Allison Escoto March 24, 2012 at 02:45 PM
THANK YOU Jared! I normally walk into town but whenever I have guests that drive in they never have a problem finding a spot behind the library!
Progress For Patchogue March 24, 2012 at 05:42 PM
Gayle, give me a break. Your sister just ran the dirtiest, sleeziest campaign in village history. I'm pretty sure you and your friends posted slanderous, libelous nonsense all over the Internet about the opposing side. For you to now try to play the victim card is laughable and incredibly cynical. It's going to take a long time for the wounds your family inflicted on this village to heal. I think we've all heard enough from you guys for the year. Time to repent instead of fomenting more bilious garbage.
gayle smith March 25, 2012 at 02:14 AM
And again......
cresten March 25, 2012 at 02:10 PM
Disallusioned citizens, attend the meetings, voice your displeasure and concerns! Let them see you! Let them hear you! Never forget! Never let them forget!
Mr. Pennypants June 19, 2012 at 01:07 AM
and the eyesore as well.
Mr. Pennypants June 19, 2012 at 01:10 AM
I just hope that when the dust settles we can finally get a Panera Bread. I'm sick of having to travel all the way to Saville to get a panini.

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