Greenport rolling out new rental law regulations

The Greenport Village Board in a 2012 photo. (Jennifer Gustavson file photo)

Greenport will begin rolling out its new rental regulations by the end of March, Mayor David Nyce said Tuesday.

Residents that own a two-family dwelling can expect to receive application packets from the village’s building department to register accessory apartments early this spring. The documents will be mailed out in waves, starting with area’s with the fewest rental units to the most, based upon current housing records, Mr. Nyce said.

“We are starting with what we know and building upon it from there,” the mayor during the village board’s Tuesday night work session. “We want to keep this as simple and user driven as possible.”

In September, members voted 3-2 in favor of the law — with trustees George Hubbard and Mary Bess Phillips voting in opposition.

More than four years in the making, the newly passed code aims to eliminate illegal apartments, which can lead to excessive traffic, parking problems, a strain on municipal services and general public health and safety concerns, Mr. Nyce has said.

Under the law, a family is defined as two or more persons related by blood and up to five persons not related by blood occupying a dwelling and living together as a traditional family.

The definition remains a point of contention from critics who have called the law cruel and unjust. Some have argued the constitutionality of a provision in the law permitting the village to search rental properties it deems in violation.

Village residents with rental apartments must register the units annually, according to the law.