Members of Community Board 13 expressed some hope on Monday that their running battle with the Indian Cultural Community Center’s proposed apartment buildings has gained some ground.
Speaking Tuesday night at Maranatha Baptist Church in Queens Village, CB 13 Executive Secretary Jerry Wind said the city’s Board of Standards and Appeals had some pointed questions for ICCC representatives.
The ICCC has acquired about 4.5 acres of land from the state on the campus of the Creedmoor Psychiatric Center in Bellerose.
What board members and civic associations first thought was a community center eventually morphed into a pair of nine-story senior housing towers.
The land acquisition process has come under investigation at the state level. Last month, the ICCC resubmitted its proposal with only six floors.
Wind said that during a hearing before the BSA on Feb. 27, one of the officials suggested the ICCC “go back to the drawing board” and come back with plans more compatible with the one- and two-family houses that are in the neighborhoods near the property.
Several board members have said all along that they are willing to consider a more reasonable submission.
“We’re not against senior housing, no matter what the ICCC says,” Wind said.
He also said that when asked about financing, ICCC representatives said it should not be an issue, but that if it became one then they would apply to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Wind said that would require developers to fill apartments via lottery.
Attorneys representing the ICCC did not return a message left at their office. The BSA hearing was continued to May 20.
In other news, Councilmen Daneek Miller (D-St. Albans) and Donovan Richards (D-Laurelton) offered brief updates on Council initiatives in the new term.
Richards, newly appointed as chairman of the City Council’s Environmental Committee, said he believes they can make great progress on flooding in Southeast Queens under new Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Emily Lloyd, and that he has made it clear that the matter will be high on his list of priorities.
He also said he is sponsoring a bill that would increase fines for people who illegally dump bags of their own household garbage in the city’s street corner litter baskets.
The board also had a presentation from Brian Connell of the Civilian Complaint Review Board, which investigates claims of police misconduct.
He said those believing they have an issue should act on their concerns quickly and with as much detail as possible.
“We gather as much evidence as possible,” he said. “We try to determine what happened. Once we do, we try to determine if it was misconduct. If it was, we can discipline that officer.”
He reminded the audience that the CCRB is necessarily independent of the NYPD and the department’s Internal Affairs Bureau both financially and administratively.
And as for acting quickly in the wake of suspected misconduct, he said first that there is an 18-month window to file a complaint.
“But that is from the time of the incident, not from the time you file the report,” he said.
Anyone can start the process by calling 1-800-341-CCRB.