After a couple hours of yelling, confusion and chaos, Community Board 7 voted Monday night to extend a variance for an Auburndale business on Northern Boulevard, preserving the conditions of a previous agreement.
At issue was an application by Utopia Realty, at 167-04 Northern Blvd., to renew its variance, which has been based on a 10-year term, to last forever and to remove a provision which requires the owner to consult the board if he is considering selling the property.
The board’s Land Use Committee had already unanimously rejected the request and instead voted in support of renewing the existing variance for another 10 years.
Around 20 civic leaders and residents attended the meeting to voice their support of the committee’s recommendation.
Chuck Apelian, vice chairman of CB 7, was one of the lone dissenting voices to the Land Use Committee’s recommendation, arguing the 10-year variance put an unfair burden on the business.
“There seems to be some kind of hysteria that we’re rezoning all of Queens. We’re not,” he said. “It’s a small business. It’s half of what’s allowed.”
After a heated discussion, the board voted 31-4 in favor of extending the variance with the prior conditions.