The owners of a property located at 3500 Sunrise Highway in Wantagh have commenced a federal civil rights action, seeking to reverse three straight court defeats in their attempt to open a “Las Vegas-style” cabaret adjacent to a residential neighborhood. Hempstead Town received notice of the legal action by Green 2009, more commonly referred to as “Billy Dean’s,” on Friday, September 5th, and Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray responded forcefully to the notification, along with Councilman Gary Hudes, Councilwoman Angie Cullin and Nassau County Legislator Michael Venditto, announcing that the town would continue its fight to block the opening of the cabaret.
“The courts have already spoken loud and clear, supporting Hempstead Town’s Board of Zoning Appeals’ denial of a permit for a cabaret to operate at 3500 Sunrise Highway,” stated Murray. “The courts have been rock solid on the law, and we have steadfastly maintained that this is the wrong place for a cabaret. I want Wantagh and Seaford neighbors to know that we will continue to fight this latest effort to open a cabaret at this location.”
Neighbors long voiced their concerns about the potential for traffic and parking congestion along residential streets surrounding the site. What’s more, neighbors expressed distaste for website advertising that depicted “Las Vegas-style” entertainment planned at the proposed site adjacent to homes.
The court history on this matter has resulted in three strikes against “Billy Dean’s’” plan. The Court of Appeals rejected a motion to review a February 13, 2014 Supreme Court Appellate Division decision that unanimously affirmed the Town of Hempstead Board of Appeals’ denial of the cabaret permit in 2011. A New York State Supreme Court decision in October of 2011 also upheld the Town Board of Appeals’ right to deny the cabaret permit.
“The courts have spoken on this matter, and I believe the Board of Appeals has ‘done the right thing’ in denying a cabaret permit in this case,” said Hudes. “I know the Town Attorney will be successful as it continues to defend our local zoning rights,” added Cullin.
Murray also thanked a number of people who have fought to preserve the residential character of the neighborhood surrounding 3500 Sunrise Highway. “In particular, community advocate Kevin Milano and former Counsel to the Town Board, County Legislator Michael Venditto, have been important forces in this fight,” stated Murray. “They have rallied neighbors, researched the law and have been tenacious in their efforts to preserve Wantagh as a great place to live.”
Prior to his current position as Nassau County Legislator, Michael Venditto was one of Hempstead Town’s lead attorneys on the matter in 2011 as it vigorously battled against Green 2009′s attempts to overturn the Board of Appeals’ decision in court. “We’ve worked hard alongside area residents in the fight to preserve the residential character of a local neighborhood, and I will continue to support the town in its fight to keep this cabaret from opening at this location,” said Venditto.
“I know that the latest action brought by ‘Billy Dean’s’ is frivolous and without merit,” concluded Murray. “I want Wantagh neighbors to be assured that we will stand with them and fight for what is right.”