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Town Hearing Set on Proposed Bayport Boat Service Shop

Longtime resident hopes to establish a family owned and operated boat sales, repair and storage business.

The former Sayville Plumbing Supply site on Montauk Higway in Bayport may soon be a new boat repair and service business if the property owner gets a green light from the Islip Town Planning Board Thursday night.

Bayport resident Michael DePalo is requesting a zone change from Business One District to Business Three for the lot that sits adjacent to the Hess gas station, just east of McConnell Avenue. He is also seeking special permits to operate a motor vehicle dealership, commercial boat storage and commercial shipyard or boat repair operation.

DePalo bought the parcel earlier this year and has spent the past two months removing a building and clearing debris off the property. 

DePalo operated Nicolls Point Marina in Oakdale for 20 years and is currently operating a mobile boat repair service company, DePalo’s Marine and Engine Works, and a company called U.K. Motorsports.

He is hoping for community support at the zoning board hearing, slated for 7:30 p.m. at Islip Town Hall on April 4.

“Everyone I’ve talked to about my business plan has been receptive and I’d love to have support at the hearing,” said DePalo, who has lived in Bayport for 16 years. He and his wife Maria have three sons in the school district and he hopes his new business will begin a legacy for his family.

The 53-year-old, who holds a degree in marine biology, has been working on engines, from lawnmowers when he was nine years old, to motorcycles, cars and boats throughout his life. He got into the business after facing a dour employment landscape once he had graduated college.

“I love the boat business and I’ve got a strong base of clients I’ve built over the years. I love what I do,” said DePalo, who’s also built custom motorcycles for a slew of celebrity names over the years.

The new business, at which DePalo said his sons will be working for and learning the trade, will include boat storage, sales of new and used boats, and repair services.

Since buying the property he’s carted off over 11 dumpsters of garbage and debris from the site, a cleanup effort that’s cost over $10,000, he estimated.

“There were chimneys, decks, yard waste, tree stumps. So much had been dumped on that site over the years,” said the 53-year-old, estimating he’s got three more dumpster loads left to cleanup at the location.

The plan is to have the business, unnamed as yet, open between June and July.

Mike April 03, 2013 at 09:56 PM
Any revenue generating business is better than the blight that was there before Mr. DePalo bought the property. Best of luck, hope you have a successful business.
Bob Draffin April 04, 2013 at 01:19 AM
The Bayport Civic Association is 100% behind Michael's proposal and will be down at Town Hall tomorrow evening to lend our support.
trboyd April 04, 2013 at 12:29 PM
Note below, do you want that in your neighborhood? In addition to environmental concerns, there is a significant amount of noice emanating from boat engines! Safety Note UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH AND SAFETY Safety Note #139 MARINAS AND BOATYARDS: PHYSICAL HAZARD AWARENESS A variety of physical hazards potentially exist at boatyards and marinas, including those caused by toxic atmospheres and hazardous chemicals, electrical and mechanical energy, flammable liquids and explosive gases. Toxic Atmospheres and Hazardous Chemicals. When working with toxic chemicals, appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) must be used. Normally, UC ANR employees are not working with toxic chemicals at marinas and boatyards, but it is a good practice to be aware of the work going on around you. If employees are sanding boats or applying coatings, then a respirator, safety goggles, protective clothing, and chemical resistant gloves are required.
trboyd April 04, 2013 at 12:51 PM
By Terry Johnson, University of Alaska Sea Grant, Marine Advisory Program: Hazardous substances abound aboard boats and in the boatyard. Silica dust, fiberglass insulation, asbestos, the smoke of burning plastics, and the chromates that are released by working with chrome and stainless steel can all cause skin and lung irritation in the short term, and lung cancer in the long. Chemicals, including solvents, paints, glues, polyester and epoxy resins, and wood preservatives are also irritants and potential carcinogens.
trboyd April 04, 2013 at 01:37 PM
This is a fact, right here on Long Island: ''A marina is really an industrial facility because you have to clean the boats, repaint the boats, fuel the boats and maintain heavy machinery,'' said Walter Hang, president of Toxics Targeting in Ithaca, N.Y., which compiles government records of contaminated sites. ''And so over the course of time many marinas become extensively polluted.''
trboyd April 04, 2013 at 04:32 PM
Does the Bayport Civic Association typically support industrialization of a residential community? MIght the association have shirked it's responsibility? None the the residents impacted by this potentiall hazardous operation have advised that they have been contacted by the association!
BB April 04, 2013 at 08:01 PM
Does anyone know the difference between a Business One District zone to Business Three?
BB April 04, 2013 at 08:05 PM
Does anyone know the difference between a Business One District zone to Business Three? Also, is the whole plot being used for this purpose? An earlier patch comment noted that only part of it was being used for the boat yard.
Rita Palma April 04, 2013 at 10:18 PM
As a friend of the Depalo family, as well as a customer of Mike's, I would stand by Mike's commitment to create an asset in our community as well as a valuable resource to boaters. This business is appropriate for the spot and ideal for the area. We are fortunate that he has invested in this property instead of the alternative that was considered by a developer.
trboyd April 04, 2013 at 10:25 PM
I too view Mike as an upstanding citizen and have been a customer, however this is not about that and I refute your assertion that it is an ideal spot. Boatyards are noisy and toxic and this will be in my backyard not yours. Perhaps you would be less enthusiastic if your property abutted same.
BB April 04, 2013 at 10:32 PM
And where do you live? I guess this isn't going to be in your back yard.
Bob Draffin April 04, 2013 at 10:54 PM
The short answer is no. First off this proposed Mom and Pop business is on Montauk Highway next to an eighteen pump gas station that operates from 6am to midnight seven days a week; hardly residential. It is a blighted parcel that has long been plagued by illegal dumping and an unsafe dilapidated vacant building. The BCA has been involved with this property as stated in a previous Patch article found here: http://sayville.patch.com/articles/fate-of-former-sayville-plumbling-land-remains-up-in-the-air . After word of a high density rental housing project on this and an adjoining parcel spread, the local residents turned out en masse at our next meeting in opposition to that idea. Since then, Mr. DePalo has made himself available at several of our meetings seeking input from the community on his project. Everyone is certainly entitled to their opinion on this or any issue, and that is why there will be a public hearing tonight.
BB April 04, 2013 at 11:17 PM
Bob, the 18 pump gas station is a long way from residents. This will be in our backyards No-one has sought to communicate with actual residents which makes this proposal all the more concerning. The Civic Association may be blessing the proposal, but you do not speak for the residents.
confectioner April 08, 2013 at 01:44 AM
Sounds like an industrial eyesore with many hazardous chemicals being dumped into the ground and air. Who composes the mighty Bayport Civic Association?

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