Cochecton is going to the dogs
By TOM KANE
LAKE HUNTINGTON — Sal Indelicato
is frustrated. After three years, dogs are still plaguing the town
board and costing it money.
The issue? Town
of Cochecton vs. Gloria Smith, the owner of a dog kennel on Pinewood
“We have spent more time and money on this than
any other matter that has come before the board,” Indelicato
told the audience at the town meeting last Wednesday. “It’s way
“This is not about dogs,” said Jeffrey Clemente,
Smith’s attorney. “It’s about hindering this woman while a kennel
down the road has nearly 100 dogs and nothing is being done.” Clemente
was referring to the Lazarian Society
“If she would merely conform
to the town’s ordinances, everyone would go home happy,” said Neal
Halloran, Cochecton code enforcement officer
Smith’s kennel, which was first owned by Adel Rabah of New York City and rented by Smith, was grandfathered
into the law when a new town ordinance limiting kennels was passed.
The kennel was allowed to house around 45 dogs, Halloran
Then in October, Smith purchased the property from
“She exceeded the number that was grand fathered
and brought in around 60 or 70 dogs without seeking a special use
permit,” Halloran said. She also put up several structures without
seeking a building permit, he said.
Neighbors of the kennel have frequently appeared
before the board to complain about the barking and the smell. Last
Wednesday, a petition with over 50 signatures were presented to the board
to protest Smith’s sister, who is allegedly seeking to establish
“We live next door to Smith and the noise and the
smell are terrible,” said Barbara Attianese.
Attianese said she had evidence that Smith dumped dog and
cat excrement on her property, but Smith denies it.
Smith has not yet received a summons from the CEO
telling her to seek a special use permit. At the board meeting Indelicato
firmly directed the CEO to do his duty and issue the necessary summons.
“The CEO is wrong about how many dogs I had when
I moved in,” Smith said. “I had more like
70 dogs. And my position is that I was grand fathered for over 60
“We counted them,” Halloran
said. “When she moved in, I myself counted slightly less than 45
“I’m being singled out,” Smith said. “Other people
can build whatever they want without any trouble. The people who
complain have nothing else to do than annoy me. One lady sits outside
my property and watches me continually.”
“This entire action is ludicrous and a waste of
money,” Clemente said.
“I’m an animal activist and I can’t stand seeing
animals abused and forgotten,” Smith said.