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Town buys 29 acres to preserve from development

Within 20 minutes on Dec. 13, the Town Board spent close to $4 million to purchase about 29 acres of land to preserve forever.

Of course, the negotiations to purchase the properties have to be measured in months not minutes. But the board’s five members didn’t waste time at their regular meeting, voting unanimously for final approval of three resolutions that secured the land that will be never be developed.

The properties were all proposed for purchase to the Town Board by the Community Preservation Fund Advisory Board. The money used to buy the parcels comes from the Community Preservation Fund, which is funded by a 2% tax that buyers pay when purchasing East End properties, and is used in turn to purchase open space for preservation and fund water protection programs.

The largest parcel of approximately 16 acres was owned by Sylvester Manor as a conservation easement and sold for $2,055,000. Close to 7.7 acres at 4 Nostrand Parkway was sold for $1,650,000 to the town by Sandra O’Connor, Russell O’Connor and Linda Casertano.

And six parcels totaling about 7 acres on Ned’s Lane was financed by an arrangement with The Peconic Land Trust that cost the town $312,500. The Land Trust acquired the parcels with a funding grant from New York State and in turn sold the properties to the town.

“It’s Christmas time,” Councilman Jim Colligan said to his smiling colleagues, after the votes were counted on the Ned’s Lane resolution.

In the lobby outside the Town Hall meeting room, the fund’s advisory board chairman, Gordon Gooding, was congratulated on the work his committee had done to secure and preserve the properties. Mr. Gooding noted that congratulations should also go to the individuals and entities involved, who were willing to sell.