STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

UPDATE: Too late for common council to stop construction on Sunset Avenue apartments

Wednesday night, the Utica Common Council held an executive session to discuss legal matters regarding the Kelberman Center project in South Utica.

Posted: Sep 19, 2019 1:02 AM
Updated: Sep 20, 2019 12:16 PM

UTICA, N.Y. - Utica Common Council members were in executive session for at least an hour Wednesday night discussing legal matters regarding the Kelberman Center project.

After the executive session, the council members said they could not discuss much, but whether or not there was a mistake and the city did not use proper procedure, it is too late to push back under article 78, which is a four-month statute.

According to council attorney Anthony Garramone, nothing can be done now by the council.

Kelberman Center Exectuive Director Dr. Robert Myers says he understands the neighbors complaints, but the project will move forward.

"We see the passion of the neighbors and we want to partner with them. If we missed a step along the way and not engaging in early enough, we’re turning a page today, I don’t think anybody disputes that we had every public hearing possible, we went above and beyond in our level of transparency but now is the time for us to turn the page, embrace this neighborhood and have them in embrace us back," said Myers.

Myers says demolition of the former sunset school will begin immediately, after which construction of the new 60-unit complex will begin.

Garramone says the reason for the executive session was because there were matters regarding the Kelberman project that involved very serious legal issues and possible law suits. He did not go into detail on what those were but the common council needed to speak with their lawyers before any further action is taken on the project that might place the city in financial jeopardy.

According to commissioner Brian Thomas, questions were raised about the proper procedure used by the city to approve the proposed project.

Some council members believe the city needed their approval by ordinance for the demolition permit, but the city says they followed the correct procedures.

According to Thomas, the project is located on a lot zoned planned development extraordinary, but some council members argue it is zoned planned unit development. 

The difference, according to Thomas, is a planned unit development involves a large tract of land possibly involving a mix of uses or in various phases in accordance with a development plan. The development plan is usually approved by the council.

Also according to Thomas, in the case of the Kelberman project, there is no larger development plan guiding future development for the site, its a project located in a planned development district, so no council approval by ordinance is needed.

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 394079

Reported Deaths: 32043
CountyConfirmedDeaths
New York City21547523104
Nassau418532183
Suffolk414271981
Westchester348661425
Rockland13602668
Orange10730478
Erie7337634
Dutchess4213151
Monroe3780266
Onondaga2863184
Albany2112121
Ulster178286
Oneida164290
Sullivan145245
Putnam132963
Niagara123788
Schenectady80537
Broome72258
Rensselaer55528
Saratoga55014
Columbia46637
Madison35717
Orleans28151
Steuben26841
Ontario2659
Warren26330
Greene26018
Fulton25724
Washington24614
Genesee2385
St. Lawrence2192
Oswego2013
Tompkins1770
Wayne1743
Herkimer1623
Chenango1465
Chemung1442
Tioga14324
Livingston1308
Chautauqua1277
Cattaraugus1236
Cayuga1192
Montgomery1184
Clinton1014
Wyoming955
Delaware914
Jefferson880
Otsego845
Seneca700
Allegany610
Schoharie580
Cortland470
Yates466
Essex420
Franklin310
Lewis300
Schuyler130
Hamilton60
Unassigned00
Utica
Broken Clouds
87° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 89°
Oneonta
Few Clouds
85° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 85°
Herkimer
Broken Clouds
87° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 89°
Thendara
Broken Clouds
87° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 89°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
Click here to learn more about A Healthier Mohawk Valley
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve
Senior Send-Off brought to you by Herkimer College
Menu 2 Go list of takeout dinners & fish fries
WKTV Golf Card - Under 150 left