Town of Hempstead officials are saying they plan to continue their fight to block the opening of a “Las Vegas-style” cabaret at 3500 Sunrise Highway in Wantagh, despite a recent federal civil rights action, seeking to reverse three defeated court cases.
“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,” Town Supervisor Kate Murray said. “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.”
Since 2011, the cabaret, more commonly referred to as “Billy Dean’s,” has continued to pursue the Town of Hempstead for permits to build at the proposed site adjacent to homes. Neighbors have long voiced their concerns over the potential traffic and parking congestion in areas surrounding the location, further expressing distaste for website advertising that depicted “Las Vegas-style” entertainment in the area.
“I know the Town Attorney will be successful as it continues to defend our local zoning rights,” Town Councilwoman Angie Cullin said.
So far, litigious proceedings on the matter have resulted in three strikes against “Billy Dean’s'” plan. Most recently, the New York State Court of Appeals rejected a motion to review a Feb. 13, 2014, Supreme Court Appellate Division decision that unanimously affirmed the Town Board of Appeals’ denial of the cabaret permit in 2011.
“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 Town Councilman Gary Hudes.
Prior to his position as Nassau County Legislator, Michael Venditto was one of the Town of Hempstead’s lead attorneys back in 2011, and vigorously battled 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.
Apart from Venditto, Supervisor Murray also thanked community advocate Kevin Milano for his continued efforts in the fight.
“[Milano and Venditto] have rallied neighbors, researched the law and have been tenacious in their efforts to preserve Wantagh as a great place to live,” Murray said. “I know that the latest action brought by ‘Billy Dean’s’ is frivolous and without merit… I want Wantagh neighbors to be assured that we will stand with them and fight for what is right.”