CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. – With the much anticipated draft findings statement for the Chappaqua Crossing retail plan now available to the public online, the New Castle Town Board will wait at least another week before putting it to a vote.
The board said in its Wednesday, Oct. 16 public meeting that dialogue regarding the document would continue in its Oct. 22 meeting.
The board told residents in an Oct. 8 town board work session that it would release the findings statements at least 48 hours before possibly making a decision on it on Oct. 16. The statement was not released until Oct. 15, however, leaving both board members and residents needing more time to digest the document, which outlines the mitigation measures needed to support Summit/Greenfield's 120,000-sqaure feet retail-grocery store proposal.
“We said you would have 48 hours – we’re giving you more than that,” Town Supervisor Susan Carpenter said. “The board is going through the statement and we’ll continue to make changes to it. We’re open to taking useful statements and are happy to take suggestions.”
Though Oct. 22 is the next time the board will discuss the Chappaqua Crossing findings statement, a vote on that date is not likely. Councilman John Buckley will be on vacation and Councilwoman Elise Kessler Mottel has removed herself from all Chappaqua Crossing ordeals. That would leave only Carpenter and councilmen Jason Chapin and Robin Stout available to vote on the document next Tuesday.
“Next Tuesday would be the time to finalize the findings statement,” Stout said. “But we’re not suggesting there will be a vote. My guess is there will still be loose ends and not be a vote that night.”
However, when resident Michael Nolan asked the board to guarantee there would not be a vote on Oct. 22, Carpenter left the door open for all possibilities.
“It would be a vote a vote without John,” she said.
Several residents used public comment time in Wednesday night’s meeting to rehash common concerns surrounding the project, including traffic and its impact on surrounding neighborhoods. There is also a growing sentiment among residents that voting before the Nov. 5 election would be doing the town an injustice.
Stout shot down misconceptions that the board is ignoring residents who are pleading with the board to hold off on making decisions anytime in the near future.
“There is a difference between not listening and not agreeing,” he said. “I am not agreeing. I see this possibility (the Chappaqua Crossing retail plan) as something that can be a substantial benefit to the town.”