Any more work from consultants that is needed to review the Homeland Towers cell tower project on Jansen Road in New Paltz will likely be paid for from the town budget. There are limits as to how much can be charged for environmental review and it’s based on the size of the project. It’s unusual for a cell tower to require an environmental impact statement, but town supervisor Neil Bettez wants to make sure that the threshold is not exceeded again. Planning and zoning boards are independent, and members cannot be told how to conduct these reviews, but Bettez is suggesting that they vote to authorize reports, rather than just adding on anything a single member requests.
There’s a perception that the expense of getting a project approved in New Paltz discourages people from doing business in the town, Bettez said, particularly the local business owners who lack the “deep pockets” to realize their dreams here. What’s left are the sort of corporate developer applicants that seem to generate more concern and controversy associated with each application.