Two town planners will step down

Two Southold Town planners are leaving the department this week after three years on the job.

Kristy Winser and Tamara Arzt are both moving on to jobs offering more opportunities for advancement, town planning director Heather Lanza said Wednesday. Both will leave the town’s employ Friday.

“They’re both career moves. It’s a small department and there’s not a lot of room to move,” said Ms. Lanza. “We’re hiring at the entry level instead of the mid-level, with the hopes that the new applicants will be here longer.”

The town’s planning department comprises just four planners, including Ms. Lanza and principal planner Mark Terry, and two secretarial assistants. Ms. Lanza said the town has a good pool of applicants to choose from for the soon-to-be-vacant positions.

“Our priority is going to be to keep the applications moving. We’re busy, but not super-busy,” she said. “In the springtime, though, things will get enlivened and it will take some time to train them.”

In other planning news, the town Planning Board discussed two applications at a work session on Monday.

The first was a site plan submitted by 133-acre Indian Neck Farm on Indian Neck Lane in Peconic. The plan calls for a change of use for three barns, each with certificates of occupancy as accessory residential structures, to primary agricultural structures, where the owners plan to raise horses. They also plan to create a 1,243-square-foot apartment on the second floor of one barn to be used as groom’s quarters.

The farm has already received Zoning Board approval for the apartment.

The change-of-use request came about because farm labor housing cannot be provided in an accessory residential structure, Ms. Lanza explained. She added that the groom’s quarters will be approved only with a condition that no more than three people can live there.

Indian Neck Farm set a record in residential real estate transfers when it was acquired by its current owners for $19.5 million in 2008.

The property sits on a deepwater creek and has a 20-acre vineyard as well as 14 buildings, including a five-bedroom main house with a media room and attached greenhouse, according to the real estate listing at the time. The property also has a guesthouse, two large barns and numerous workshops.

The site plan currently before the Planning Board would also add six pasture shelters and two 24-foot silos to the property.
The board is also considering granting a 90-day extension for a conditional sketch of a five-lot subdivision on the south side of Colony Road in Southold.