Manorhaven appoints former trustee Vincent Costa, mayor Michael Meehan to BZA

Manorhaven appoints former trustee Vincent Costa, mayor Michael Meehan to BZA
Manorhaven's Village Hall. (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Familiar faces will be rejoining Manorhaven’s government on the board of zoning appeals after the board of trustees approved the appointment Wednesday night of a former trustee and mayor, both with controversial histories with the village.

Former trustee Vincent Costa was appointed to serve on the board of zoning appeals through July 1, 2026. He is fulfilling the seat left by Thomas McCarvill.

Former mayor Michael Meehan was appointed to serve on the board of zoning appeals through July 1, 2025. He is fulfilling the vacant seat left by Jerry Volpe.

Both appointments were made unanimously by the board members, but before voting, Trustee Jeffrey Stone asked for additional time to discuss appointees in the future, suggesting three days before the agenda was distributed.

“Because this is a very important board for sure,” Stone said. “But I welcome any new appointees to the board as it’s a big job ahead of them and I hope they serve well.”

Costa was a trustee for the village after being elected in 2021 but was not re-elected in the 2023 election, falling short by a single vote. He was replaced by Stone.

Before ending his terms as trustee, Costa was criticized during a board of trustees meeting by the outgoing clerk who alleged he had been fabricating the work he was reporting in his pension documents submitted to the State of New York.

Costa responded by confirming the clerk’s accusation.

Former Manorhaven Trustee Rita Di Lucia, who was replaced on the board by Costa after losing her 2021 re-election, said she filed a formal complaint June 8 with the New York State Comptroller’s Office requesting an investigation into Costa’s pension documents.

The outgoing clerk also alleged that Costa had made death threats to the village’s complaint investigator, as well as petitioned in village hall to solicit signatures, which is not allowed by a trustee.

Costa ​​said he was not aware he could not petition in village hall and stopped once he was made aware.

Meehan served as the village’s mayor from 2008 until his resignation in 2012 just months before his term ended. He stepped down due to family and business reasons, Newsday reported in 2012, saying he was leaving a life in the public to a private one.

He previously served as an alternate on the village’s board of zoning appeals from 2005 through 2008.

Manorhaven resident Richard Li asked the board Wednesday night to confirm that the Meehan appointed was the former mayor, which Mayor John Popeleski affirmed.

He then asked the board if they were aware of his history with the village and how he left office. Board members said they were.

“If you’re aware of the history, I mean you don’t doubt that someday he’s just going to take off and quit?” Li asked. “Just think twice, please, alright? I mean you do have a responsibility to put people’s best interest [first].”

Li also asked Stone about the BZA appointments, referencing the prior board of trustees meeting in which the board erupted in an argument over the appointment of a BZA chairman.

He questioned why Stone would have supported Volpe as the chairman of the board, citing his approval of controversial projects along Manhasset Aisle.

“So you think it’s great to have three-story, rental buildings, buildings on Manhasset Aisle?” Li asked Stone.

Stone said that his support of Volpe was based on his long-term experience on the BZA, not his voting record. Li criticized Stone for not being informed of Volpe’s voting record before supporting him as chairman.

The board also appointed Richard Ready to serve as an alternate prosecutor for the village court. His term ends on July 1.

Also approved by the board was the installation of a new stop sign on the southbound side of Sintsink Drive East at the intersection of Corchaug Avenue Northwest.

Stone said he found the new stop sign to be put in a “great location” and suggested that the trees and bushes are trimmed for visibility.

Popeleski said the road striping at the intersection will be done and that the words “STOP” will be painted on the road once the sign is erected, increasing awareness of the stop sign.

Stone had previously asked if the village could conduct a road study, which Popeleski said Wednesday night could cost the village $30,000. Stone said he understands the financial impact of a study, suggesting other methods to ensure pedestrian and traffic safety.

“We have to be responsible as a board,” Popeleski said. “I feel that kind of money would be a waste… we just can’t spend money on studies.”

Popeleski also gave an update on the village’s budget, saying that it is on target. He said the village’s accountant is pleased because the village is making more than $13,000 a month on interest.

“Where the previous administration, the most they made was $3,000 for the year,” Popeleski said.

He said if the interest pace is continued, the village would look into long-term investments to boost revenues.

“So I’m trying to keep us afloat,” Popeleski said. “… But I’m very proud that the village is making money and we’re doing what we have to do fiscally for the residents of this village.”

The village will be hosting a holiday house decoration competition, where two trustees and an individual will drive around the village and judge the decorated homes on Dec. 13. The winners will be announced at the Dec. 20 board of trustees meeting, with the top three winners receiving gift cards ranging from $50-$100.

“We did it last year and I know the people who went around, our judges to look at all the houses, they had a really hard time picking the winners,” Popeleski said.

The village will also be hosting a tree and menorah lighting on Dec. 6 starting at 6:30 p.m.

The village is also participating in the toy and food drive hosted by the Port Washington Chamber of Commerce and Port Washington Police District. Unwrapped toys and packaged foods can be donated at the village hall.

Popeleski said the toys and food donated will be distributed to individuals in Port Washington.

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  1. Hi Cameron, I just saw your story on the new BZA appointments by the mayor which consisted of a prior mayor who failed to finish his term of office and our recent trustee/deputy mayor who you said lost his bid for office by one (1) vote. This is somewhat misleading as the new independent candidate, Jeff Stone, beat Vincent Costa by 110 votes and as well as his running mate by 109 votes. The mayor has majority control of the Board of Trustees at present with members either supported by him or appointed by him this past year. Our village needs some more new appointments and leaders to deal with the various building issues that are currently existing in our small village.

  2. I made a strategic choice to resign with 3 months remaining on my two year term. I fought the good fight to protect the Village of Manorhaven from the impending fines that the Federal Government was certain to impose based on the inevitable ignorance of tactics by the leader of the “grassroots “ movement led by eventual Mayor Guinta. She and her group thought that simply “sending a letter” would absolve them from complying with the conditions of the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Re: Local control is transferred to the Federal Government when entering into a contract for a Cell Phone Tower. I had hoped that by resigning that Deputy Mayor John DiLeo might hold her and her ilk off. Not to be. I chose to leave because I did not want to keep fighting against the community and their support of an idea that somehow, magically the new Mayor could deliver what I could not. Of course she could not and did not.


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