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Seaford School District Gearing Up for Referendum Vote

Proposed $5 million sale of former Seaford Avenue School property to be decided on Dec. 12.

- The following was submitted by the Seaford School District

After securing an amended contract in accordance with the community’s wishes, the Seaford School District is calling all registered voters to the polls on Dec. 12 to approve a $5 million deal that would sell the former Seaford Avenue School property to a longtime developer who plans to build condominiums on the 5.66 acre site. 

BK at Seaford, LLC, a subsidiary of the Engel Burman Group of Garden-City, hopes to build the Seasons at Seaford condominium community, consisting of about 112 two-bedroom units, a clubhouse, an in-ground pool, private parking, landscaping and other amenities. Selling prices will be between $350,000 and $400,000 per unit.

As per the new contract, at least one person in each unit must be 55 years of age or older and have no school-age children. In addition, no rentals are allowed; the units will only be for sale. The school district sought these stipulations in response to concerns raised at an Oct. 4 informational meeting.

“After months of preparation, reaching out to the community and working with all parties involved, we believe we are presenting to our voters a fair and sound proposal,” said Seaford Board of Education President Brian Fagan. “We hope everyone takes the time to get out to the polls to vote.”

According to district officials, if the sale is approved it would generate nearly $500,000 in additional tax revenue and would save the district an estimated $100,000 on basic maintenance costs associated with the property.

The Seaford Avenue School building was last used to educate Seaford students back in 1981 and was leased to Five Towns College until 1992 and then to Nassau BOCES until 2010. The district, being unable to secure another lessee for the building, left it vacant for the past two years which reduced the district’s revenues by about $400,000 annually.

The Board of Education hired the real estate marketing firm Greiner-Maltz to find a potential buyer and, subsequently, an offer was made by BK at Seaford, LLC and accepted by the school board. In addition to the public vote, the sale is subject to a change in zoning, which the developer would pursue through the Town of Hempstead.

Voting on the referendum will take place from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the Seaford Harbor School and Seaford Manor School. 

Unjust December 03, 2012 at 11:34 PM
Hi VL... Like so many I was offline / no power for a long time after Sandy... so I've been reading & catching up here. Last I knew you were against the sale & now for it. May I ask what changed your mind...was new info made avail to you or others in Seaford? The only info & mail I received about the sale / vote / meetings was when the blue postcards were sent out in a hurry. And that's also on behalf of someone else directly near the Ave School. I've done my research on the sale and still feel condos are NOT the way to go. There are families who have lived in Seaford in the area you're asking about long before SOB /135 was built...Many are older and don't use computers. CONDOS on that land = Everyones backyard...ALL of US WILL be IMPACTED.
VL December 04, 2012 at 01:33 AM
(Sorry folks, this is one of those longer posts--for Unjust) Good evening, Unjust, Welcome back, and I am glad you are relatively safe and sound after the storm. Relative to my shifting of sides: I came in mid-point to this “battle.” Being a late comer, I had presumed the passion that was exuded (for the “no” vote) was based on careful research and study of all of the facts of this sale. As time went by, I found that many critical pieces of paperwork (reflecting costs), were not requested by the public to the school (where the files reside). Relative to my findings: The BOE performed their due diligence in regards of P & L just when BOCES was planned to leave the building. They hired a reputable engineering company to inspect and present a list of upgrades and required repairs. To be able to rent or legally use the building would require $5,336,115.10 (2010 prices) to update/upgrade the building to present ADA and building codes. This does not reflect any asbestos abatement; the asbestos would continue to be managed as it was from the time BOCES began use of the building till the time they left. Management of the asbestos in the building ceased when no students were present. Just to restate the fact: The BOE had considered keeping the building, however due to the figured cost of [legally-required and for code purposes] upgrades, general repairs, general upkeep, etc. (typical P & L), the numbers did not work in favor of the district…by a long margin.
VL December 04, 2012 at 01:34 AM
The best measure, from a business point-of-view (without emotion) is to sell the property. Now sits the question of the pros and cons (condos vs. single-family home builders). The condominium developer in question, has very “deep pockets.” Some say this can be good, some say bad. I personally think this is a good situation. They would have the ability to remove the entire building safely and quickly (asbestos, oil tanks, etc.). They have the funds/reputation (they have their own builders/contractors) to build quality units and complete the entire job in a much shorter time than would individual builders. Individual builders run into problems (showing up, quality of work, maintaining building schedule) with their workers, town permits, quality of mid and final product, to name but a few. They also can run out of funds, easily delaying the finalization of the building. If we went with individual home builders we would most likely have to parcel the land out accordingly and eventually bear the cost of tearing down the building ourselves (costing the district more monies). Not to mention the real estate costs of selling/parceling land. From a sheer construction point of view, the building of a condominium development would be far, FAR quicker than would individual homes (less dirt/dust/noise).
VL December 04, 2012 at 01:35 AM
To lean to the side to spend more money than it is worth to keep the building/fields, allowing for a consistent bleed out every year for general maintenance and upkeep, and come back to this problem in the next few years, makes absolutely no sense. The district is not going to make near the net profit with the sale of this property going to individual home builders, as it would with this particular buyer. To seek county, state, federal grants to try to keep/utilize this property is a far dream after Sandy hit our shores. There is and will be a long financial recovery after this storm, and to seek “reprieve” for this parcel does not look logically forthcoming. Just as a mention, my family and I have been here before the Seaford Oyster Bay was here, before the train tracks were raised (with MUCH heat from the town--they feared it looked too much like the city!), there was a cow pasture where the SHS now stands, and when there were woods behind my house and a pond…before it was clear-cut and the pond filled in to build my present neighbors houses. Think back of how different this place was 45+ years ago. We have shifted and grown…good and bad. However, change is inevitable. If it were not, there would be about six house in the entire town of Seaford.
VL December 04, 2012 at 01:35 AM
Last note: To where and when this purported money is dispersed…I leave that to the BOE and the Advisory Committee (see below). Seaford Schools Budget Advisory Committee Planning For Upcoming 2013-2014 Fiscal Year The Seaford Board of Education welcomes the involvement of Seaford community members to work on its annual budget and fiscal analysis. The members will be asked to review the process and to contribute ideas and suggestions. The work of this group will help to establish priorities and weigh options, as the budget framers wrestle with the list of needs while knowing that a State-imposed tax levy cap is now a reality. Budget Advisory Schedule The first Budget Committee meeting will be held at 7:30 pm on Wednesday, January 9, 2013, for the purpose of organization and review of its format and goals. Budget information will be available for review prior to the three (3) regular meetings that will take place at 7:30 pm in the Board of Education Conference Room located in the Manor Elementary School on the following dates: Wednesday, January 23, 2013 Wednesday, February 6, 2013 Wednesday, February 27, 2013 If you are interested in being part of the Committee, please contact Alan S. Phillips, Interim Asst. Superintendent for Business at 516-592-4004 or aphillips@mail.seaford.K12.NY.US
VL December 04, 2012 at 01:35 AM
Whew!
Patrick December 04, 2012 at 01:51 AM
@Judith Conlon, if that is your real name, this is Patrick Lynch, I have asked you a direct question about facts, and you have ignored it. I, Patrick O'Malley, a resident of Seaford, have as much to say about this than anyone else, without being attacked by anyone. I, Patrick Fitzgerald, unlike yourself, speak for only myself, like everyone else on this thread. Just like the naysayers, I, Patrick McGinty, have done research, attended BOE meetings, and have formulated my conclusions based on facts, not conjecture and supposition. I have asked you, whatever your name is, to please inform all about any other possible deals that were either in the works or, as some have indicated, ignored for this property. And you, "she who uses her real name and believes that gives her more credibility", that is your new Native American name that I just made up, have replied with nothing other than rhetoric. Therefore, I, Patrick Schwartz, have come to the conclusion that rhetoric is all you have to offer, and nothing else. And I, Patrick Henry, believe I speak for many others as well on this point.
VL December 04, 2012 at 02:15 AM
rechecks the ingredients in her coffee*
Constance Roland December 04, 2012 at 04:11 AM
@ VL, thanks for the refresher. @ Patrick. And I thought I knew you. Very clever.
Lorraine DeVita December 04, 2012 at 04:27 AM
beekay- thanks for the { } .. much appreciated However to single one person out is really doing what you all claim they are. There are MANY here who have crossed the line MORE then few times and much worse , some have been warned by patch staff, some have been ignored, some have been personally taken to task elsewhere or chastized here. some are indeed, vindicitive spiteful and some indeed are just plain NUTS & whacka doodles. however part and parcel of posting on these public sites is taking the good with the bad and hope the good out weighs bad &people understand that some peoples passions out weigh their common sense and sensibilites while other people are just plain mean & mean spirtited & @ tmes questionably certifiable . I truly dont think Judith is mean spirited far from it in fact she truly is a lovely lady i think she is passionate and totaly frustrated and while she may have stepped over the line of cocktail party correctness there have been others who have dished out far worse. NOT an EXCUSE but possibly an explaination of why a lovely lady can go a little off the mark when it comes to something so close to home for her. This only underlines how People ARE getting aggitated, frustrated, concernd and worried about THEIR homes, their neighborhood and it can be frustrating as hell when others who are NOT directly effected do not understand nor support them & all that many see are dollars signs NOT peoples lives, homes, quality of life & futures.
Lorraine DeVita December 04, 2012 at 05:12 AM
What MANY are forgetting is that there is REAL fear with THIS particular developer for these homeowners who HAVE done their homework when it comes to the veracity of this builder. You can throw all the numbers and reasons to sell this school around and probably 99% of the people here myself included agree with you IT does need to be sold. but if AS much IN DEPTH research was done into this devleoper as it was on the numbers pro and con then i think possibly there would be a slightly different thought process for many.this developer has proven over and over profit at ANY COST to the communities they walk into. I can not deny the #'s, Vals research is impeccable HOWEVER, i can not support THIS developer in OUR community. They do build a damn fine product, however that product may start OUT as option A and if it NOT profitable ENOUGH it quickly changes to option b or c or d or even z . ALL the while the neighbors surrounding those developments go thru hell and back and are totaly ignored by their own community. I am not looking at common sense, hell knows 50% of the decisions made do not make common sense in this district. i am looking at common decency and compassion and i support the people who are effected MOST by this referendum. Their LIVES WILL be changed DRAMATICALLY during ALL phases of this and forever, and i for one wouldnt wish that on my worst enemy . I cant see selling my neighbors or my community to THIS developer for ANY amount of money.
Patrick December 04, 2012 at 01:14 PM
Lorraine, your Monday morning quarterbacking of this developer is a point. So I will ask, of the many other residential developers that are out there, which would you like to see build this project, what was their proposal, and what was thier bid on the property? This information is critical for everyone for everyone to make an informed decision and try to figure out why these proposals were turned down by the BOE. Thank You Patrick Kelly
Lorraine DeVita December 04, 2012 at 02:19 PM
Patrick, I dont support strip clubs, adult entertainment their owners nor developers nor individuals who have no concern or little if no regard for the the people who live in close proximity and have to bear the brunt of this forever . Dont get me wrong There ARE places for 110 condo developments on long island there are also places for Strip clubs and adult entertainment venues.(as apparently it is a hot market for some) HOWEVER in single family home developments where they impact the quality of life , the equity of someones home and landscape of a neigborhood i personally will not support ANY concept by a builder who every day is making Negative headlines for their dealings throughout the island and the total lack of regard for the people surrounding them. You obviously support BOTH and that patrick is your right. I am not justifiying the dollars, i am supporting the people who live there and clearly dont want THIS developer in THEIR neighborhood for some very valid reasons. and if that means th eproperty just sits there until another comes along then you know what so be it .. perhaps not the rational road to take but we have been down this road before. and i wonder where the hell the money went that was approved and specificaly slated to upgrade this building during the Markle years? what happened to THOSE dollars and where are they?
VL December 04, 2012 at 02:50 PM
pours herself another cup of coffee* This could take awhile.
Lilly Hayden December 04, 2012 at 03:29 PM
Belay my last. Seems like that post/article was amended since i first read it.
Joe December 04, 2012 at 03:32 PM
Now that's funny!
Andrew Coen December 04, 2012 at 03:32 PM
Here is an updated q & a provided by district that answers questions related to the referendum: http://wantagh.patch.com/articles/seaford-school-district-provides-q-a-on-referendum-proposal
VL December 04, 2012 at 03:34 PM
Lorraine Patrick's civilly-presented question/s specifically presented to you were not addressed in your answer (in any way/shape/or form). If you do not know the details of your previously professed comments, say so. That is fine and understandable. Please note that to play the "character-assassination" card as well as the "change of subject" card when asked a direct and civil question does not lend credence to your position.
VL December 04, 2012 at 04:07 PM
Andrew, Thank you for your diligence.
Lorraine DeVita December 04, 2012 at 04:35 PM
Valerie, you are an intelligent woman, you are also a fairly nice person so i will respond to you, how the heck did i assasinate Patricks character or yours for that matter or the developers. I responded to Patrick in a manner i felt was appropriate. I was calm, supported his right to support his causes, did not purposely agitate him. I dont play character assassination cards. People assassinate themselves it seems by going whack a doodles over some perceived slight. Civil is and can be loosely interpeted with some. I have done nothing but give you praise for your extensive research and fact finding, i gave you props for it and if you remember i also told you how to fill out those pesky foil forms encouraging you to be As specific and detailed as possible to avoid getting half answers , i encouraged you to seek all avenues and did not try to dissuade you from seeking further information. I also stated HERE your conclusions based on your research were sound ones. I dont DISAGREE that the property should be sold. I DO however disagree that THIS developer with THIS plan is NOT the right one for THIS community. if you have a personal problem with me and my decions then i would encourage you to pick up the phone and call me. I am not challenging YOUR decisons to change sides based on your research. Again that is YOUR perogative, MY decision is not to sell out my neighbors for any amount of money especially and primarily to THIS developer for this proposed plan.
VL December 04, 2012 at 05:09 PM
The question is as stated (a few posts up from this one): Patrick 8:14 am on Tuesday, December 4, 2012 Lorraine, your Monday morning quarterbacking of this developer is a point. So I will ask, of the many other residential developers that are out there, which would you like to see build this project, what was their proposal, and what was thier bid on the property? This information is critical for everyone for everyone to make an informed decision and try to figure out why these proposals were turned down by the BOE. Thank You Patrick Kelly
VL December 04, 2012 at 05:10 PM
I am merely seeking the answer, not the "packing material."
Lorraine DeVita December 04, 2012 at 05:52 PM
You got both- like i said-a personal issue call me or even email me you have both -and have used both extensively in the past - However dont USE anyone or anything as a foil for other underlying "issues". Perhaps you need to be cognizant of the difference between perceived civility vs deprecated intent. I dare say the individual you quoted knows the difference.
Buster of Seaford December 04, 2012 at 08:56 PM
Getting back to basics, what first got me involved with all this: It's way too big for the land, and hadn't been thought out. It wasn't, and that slick attempt at a powerpoint sell at the High School made it clear. Traffic study..oh, really? No transparency all along, it's all about money at the greater expense of Seaford. How folks can't see that, I just don't know. Neither EB or the school district care about that, it's simply not a factor. It obviously is such an awful location for such a large development. And both parties should have acknowledged the opposition is substantial enough to appease folks by at least offering an alternative, more palatable proposal. As in smaller. So maybe they wouldn't make as much..after all they like to present themselves as good builders, concerned with a development's impact, right? ood neighbors? But no. Maximum profit for them, and the district gets a ten year kitty to use for I don't know what..does anyone? So hey sure.. shoehorn it all in there and suck it up, neighbors! EB says there will be no traffic. Yup, less than when BOCES used it. And old golden folks like me, (over 55) we don't drive! All is well. Sign here. And this besides that craaaazy contract. The district does have legal counsel, yes? So no. I'm not buyin' it. Go back to the drawing board guys. and maybe among other possibilities, EB will come back with something more realistic. They will still make their money, and I'll sleep better knowing I did the right thing.
VL December 04, 2012 at 09:12 PM
...still can't answer the question. Oh-the-shock.
Lilly Hayden December 04, 2012 at 09:45 PM
Very well stated Buster. I have yet to hear what will be done with the increase of sewage in the area as well.
Patrick December 05, 2012 at 01:03 AM
To all, Lorraine says, from this string ":I dont play character assassination cards" Her quote, from another "HOWEVER patrick your persistence in attacking me personaly is bordering on Harrasment and stalking your obsession is over the top and quite frankly i am afraid that you will resort to violence which i am posting here for future reference as I am afraid you might take you attacks on me to another level" Lorraine, you don't attempt to try assassinate character? explain this statement to everyone, if you can. Your words, cut and pasted from another string, True or not. Did you make this post? Y or N Easy question Y or N?
Unjust December 05, 2012 at 01:28 AM
Hi VL.... Thank you very much for your in-depth reply. I appreciate the info and the time you took to post it. I know change is good...and the Land & Ave school will change...in time. That said....**this sale** still doesn't sit well with me. It would be MUCH better if SFH were an option. I do NOT have a good feeling about EB or 100 plus condos in Our backyards. Thank you again VL for your time.
VL December 05, 2012 at 02:10 AM
Unjust, It was my pleasure to do so. Good night! :)
Chris Wendt December 05, 2012 at 11:47 AM
Patrick and Lorraine please stop with the personal issues. This thread must not devolve into a personal spat. Especially not a spat over past behavior and other distantly removed topics. Let's keep this relevant, on-point and on topic, please. You folks have a very important vote one week from today. You should all concentrate on that and the real issues concerning it. You have a great Q&A or FAQ posted above this thread, which is what should be driving the conversation here, now. You can also look at the condition of the old school and read the contract, the traffic study, view the district's powerpoint, the developer's powerpoint and other documents on your school district website at http://www.seaford.k12.ny.us//site/Default.aspx?PageID=256 Your taxes pay for this website, you should check it out, especially now. If there are unanswered questions, there is a school board meeting tomorrow night at 7:30 in the Manor School where you can go and get real answers for yourself, from the only people who can provide real answers, the Board of Education, those people you elected to represent you in these matters.

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