Dam shame: Homeowners “duped” into buying failing water barrier

Some homeowners say town deliberately offloaded a faulty dam

Tri-State /
Aug.August 27, 2021 10:02 AM
A dam shame: Cortlandt officials and homeowners spar over failing water barrier

The dam in the Westchester County town of Cortlandt (Town of Cortlandt)

The Westchester County town of Cortlandt has a proposal to end a decades-long battle with homeowners over Wallace Pond, but whether those homeowners will accept the deal is another question.

The disagreement stems over the town’s sale of the pond’s failing dam structure to a homeowners association in the mid-1980s, according to Lohud. The dam needs an estimated $4 million in repairs, which the association says it can’t afford.

In 1984, the homeowners association closed a deal with the town to buy what it thought was two parcels and the pond itself. Years later the association discovered it was handed the dam instead.

Town Attorney Tom Wood, who himself drew up the deed for the sale way back when, said the town “inadvertently” divided up the parcel. He added there was no “deliberate intent” to knowingly sell a failing dam to the homeowners association.

Wallace Pond homeowners allege the town, which found out about the needed repairs just a year prior to the sale, sold them the dam so they wouldn’t have to pay to maintain it.

“I think it was deceitful,” said attorney Dan Pagano, who is representing some homeowners. “The town knew of the problem and they sold it to the homeowners without telling them.”

Town officials now want to fund repairs to the dam by taxing homeowners through the creation of a park district of about 100 homes around the pond.

Those homeowners would have to pay the town back for a $3 million bond for repairs. The town would throw in $1 million and pay 18 percent of the annual debt service.

Homeowners don’t appear receptive to the proposal. Pagano said that the town is trying to “con the homeowners” into paying to repair the dam when the town should take responsibility.

“The town thinks it can convince these people to vote to tax themselves,” he said.

[Lohud] — Dennis Lynch





    Related Articles

    arrow_forward_ios
    George Filopoulos, Lloyd Goldman and Gurney’s Montauk hotel  (Gurney's, Getty)
    Metrovest, Lloyd Goldman secure $218M refi on Montauk resort
    Metrovest, Lloyd Goldman secure $218M refi on Montauk resort
    46 Ledgerock Lane, Hyde Park, NY (Corcoran County Living)
    Hyde Park home nearly hanging over Hudson River asks $45M
    Hyde Park home nearly hanging over Hudson River asks $45M
    NorthPoint Development plans to acquire this 92-acre property in Yaphank (Google Maps)
    NorthPoint to buy 92 acres of Suffolk County industrial space
    NorthPoint to buy 92 acres of Suffolk County industrial space
    RXR agrees to build part of 860-unit White Plains project
    RXR agrees to build part of 860-unit White Plains project
    RXR agrees to build part of 860-unit White Plains project
    Birch Group President Mark Meisner and 101 Hudson Street in Jersey City, NJ (The Birch Group, Google Maps)
    Birch Group paying $380M for large Jersey City office
    Birch Group paying $380M for large Jersey City office
    Eviction Notices (iStock)
    Westchester County leads state in evictions outside NYC
    Westchester County leads state in evictions outside NYC
    New York state is also contributing $125 million toward rent relief from the budget. (iStock)
    On Long Island, family of 4 earning $156K qualifies for rental assistance
    On Long Island, family of 4 earning $156K qualifies for rental assistance
    (Compass)
    Waterfront home in Water Mill asks $19.5M
    Waterfront home in Water Mill asks $19.5M
    arrow_forward_ios

    The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

    Loading...