Pictured Above: The site of the proposed luxury hotel “The Enclaves” on the Main Road in Southold.

After much public backlash against the Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency’s approval two months ago of $2.7 million in tax breaks for the proposed $44 million luxury hotel The Enclaves proposed on the Main Road in Southold, the Suffolk IDA will hold a local public hearing on the proposal next Monday, Dec. 11 at 4 p.m. at Southold Town Hall.

The Southold-Peconic Civic Association is planning a public information session about the tax abatements on Saturday, Dec. 9 at 10 a.m. at the Peconic Community Center, 1170 Peconic Lane in Peconic. All are welcome. Representatives of The Enclaves, the IDA and elected officials have been invited to attend.

The Southold Town Zoning Board granted conditional approval for a special exception use permit for a 44-unit, 73,00-square-foot hotel and swimming pool and the conversion of the existing building to a 74-seat restaurant at a 6.75-acre site at 56655 Route 25 in Southold, the former location of The Hedges Bed & Breakfast, in December of 2021. The project received preliminary approval from the Southold Town Planning Board in June of 2023.

The Special Exception Use permit from the Zoning Board, which stipulated that The Enclaves could not hold outdoor or special events and could not expand, was granted after nearly three hours of comment at a public hearing, from residents concerned about the intensity of the use of the property and its impact on local infrastructure and beaches.

The tax abatement application and approval came as a surprise to many Southold residents — the Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency usually meets at the county’s H. Lee Dennison Building in Hauppauge, far from the watchful eye of North Fork citizens.

In its application for tax benefits, developers said the high-end project “will be very expensive to construct and equip,” citing a $2 million on-site sewage treatment plant and design elements and materials that “could be replaced with less expensive alternatives but the result would not be consistent with the caliber of resort that will be The Enclaves.”

They added that they would be hiring local contractors and expect to have about 51 employees once the hotel is up and running.

According to a press release from Southold Town Supervisor Scott Russell announcing the local hearing, the Suffolk IDA “is authorized by New York State Municipal Law to extend financial assistance in the form of potential exemptions from New York State sales tax, property tax and several other costs. Such expenses can have substantial financial impacts on Southold Town and Supervisor Russell urges you to participate.”

Background information for the public hearing is available on the IDA’s website.

Beth Young
Beth Young is an award-winning local journalist who has been covering the East End since the 1990s. She began her career at the Sag Harbor Express and, after receiving her Masters from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, has reported for the Southampton Press, the East Hampton Press and the Times/Review Media Group. She founded the East End Beacon website in 2013, and a print edition in 2017. Beth was born and raised on the North Fork. In her spare time, she tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at editor@eastendbeacon.com

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