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Southold Town Board to rule on appeal of proposed Orient teardown

The current house that may be demolished. (Credit: Cyndi Murray)

The Southold Town Board has reached a decision on an Orient couple’s appeal to demolish a home located in the hamlet’s historic district. 

But board members won’t vote on the resolution until the Dec. 3 board meeting, Supervisor Scott Russell said.

“We’ve had plenty of time,” he announced during Tuesday’s work session. “Everybody read the record, looked at the code.”

During a public hearing in August, Louis Potters and Lenore Brancato, who own a 1,827-square-foot house on Skippers Lane next to Poquatuck Park, argued that their home has no historic value and that the town’s Historic Preservation Commission did not adequately review the application for their proposed “teardown.”

A majority of Orient residents, however, opposed their plans to replace the existing house with a roughly 3,000-square-foot home.

The homeowners appealed to the Town Board after their initial application was denied by the HPC in May.

Mr. Russell said at that time that the Town Board was not required to hold a public hearing, but said Tuesday that “none of the information taken at the public hearing is supposed to be applied to any decision.”

Since the issue received a lot of public attention, Mr. Russell said he wanted to notify both the applicants and community at large that a decision would be forthcoming.

“It seems unfair to just put it on [for a vote today]” he said. “It was a very large issue, a very charged issue.”

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