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Variance OK'd for senior housing

A developer who hopes to build a senior housing development in Elma has received a variance from the Zoning Board of Appeals.

Brian Young, of Young Development, had approached the Zoning Board in October with a plan to build 47 units on Bowen Road across from Pond Brook, a community of individual townhouses.

Another developer with a similar plan approached the board in November. Martin DiPietro, owner of the Elma Village Plaza on Bowen Road, and David Resetarits, from Resetarits Construction, sought the board's position on a plan to build 50 to 100 units on land immediately south of the Bowen Road plaza.

Town Board members this week said they were worried about having to consider both projects at the same time because only one of the two would be able to hook into Pond Brook's sewer plant.

Supervisor Michael Nolan noted that nothing is before the Town Board yet. He also noted that only Young has appeared before both the Planning and Zoning boards.

Before any Town Board action is taken, items to be addressed include the size of the building, compliance with building codes and parking. The Town Board would have to issue a special-use permit to deal with an environmental review, drainage district and any sewer district extension. Nolan said an engineer would have to be hired, at the developer's cost, to review the sewer district, and the developer also would have to pay for any needed upgrades.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation and the Town Board have to approve any sewer project.

In other business before the Town Board this week, Nolan said he is looking into drafting a new policy governing cell phones for certain department heads who use them because of the amount of time they are away from their offices.

Nolan wants to get rid of all town-owned cell phones and, instead, give the employees a stipend every month to use their own cell phones. No stipend has been decided upon yet.

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