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Potential Expansion of St. Stephen’s Lodge Discussed in South Amboy

By: Joseph L. Kuchie

City Engineer Mark RasimowiczCity Engineer Mark Rasimowicz

City Engineer
Mark Rasimowicz

SOUTH AMBOY – South Amboy’s city attorney received a request from St. Stephen’s Lodge to potentially expand their property.

The lodge has asked the city to donate a 25×5 grassy area near their facility so they can add on to the back of their building. While the decision is up to the city council, the city attorney recommended that they not donate the property as it could be used by the city in the future.

“We normally would not donate property,” said Business Administrator Camille Tooker. “If we vacate property we would split it between two property owners or something if we know we’re never going to need it.”

City Engineer Mark Rasmowicz noted that there might be some confusion over where the property line is. South Amboy’s tax maps have changed over the years, and the property in question seems large for what St. Stephen’s is looking to accomplish.

“They may believe that the property line might be closer to their building,” Rasimowicz said. “From what I’ve heard it sounds like a small extension on the building, but if they need this strip it’s 25 feet away from the existing building so there might be some confusion.”

Councilman Tom Reilly and Councilwoman Zusette Dato both had concerns about donating the property away.

“I’m not so sure we should be in a position to be handing property away especially with the parking issues on Broadway if we plan to maybe expand a parking lot back there,” Reilly said. “I think that’s a better use to the citizens then handing a piece of property over”

“It seems risky to give it up,” Dato added. “Surely the other property owners will ask for the same thing if we grant this one. We may need it.”

Councilwoman-at-Large Christine Noble headed the business meeting as Council President Mickey Gross was not in attendance. The next city council meeting will be held Wednesday, May 20th at 7:00 p.m.

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