Greenport Village pulls out of annexation lawsuit

JENNIFER GUSTAVSON FILE PHOTO | The Greenport Village Board at a meeting last January.

The long-pending annexation saga between Greenport Village, Southold Town and the Kontokosta family may finally be over.

After almost a decade of legal wrangling between the village and town over a proposed condominium complex just outside the village boundaries, on Jan. 17 the State Supreme Court approved Greenport’s request to end its participation in the case, which essentially kills it.

The Kontokostas had proposed moving the town/village boundary line to include their 17 acres on the south side of Route 48 near San Simeon by the Sound into the village, a move needed for the family to pursue the Northwind Village 128-unit condominium complex.

The plans called for some of the units to be set aside for “workforce housing,” but the village does not have an affordable housing program limiting sales prices.

Former Greenport Mayor David Kapell initiated the lawsuit against Southold in 2005 after the town said no to the annexation. Changing the bounday lines would allow a connection to village sewers and put the land under far less restrictive village zoning, both required for the high density proposed. The Kontokosta family covered the village’s legal bills.

The current Greenport Village Board voted unanimously last January to withdraw the lawsuit. Village officials argued it would cost the village more in services for the new development than it would receive in additional tax revenues.

Attempts to reach Mayor David Nyce and the Kontokosta’s development company, the KACE Group, were not immediately successful.

Southold Supervisor Scott Russell welcomed the village’s decision to withdraw the suit, saying the town “never had any interest” in moving its boundary lines.