Neighbors fight new affordable housing in flood-prone Amity Harbor

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AMITY HARBOR -

Residents who live in a flood-prone South Shore neighborhood are fighting plans to build new affordable housing there.

Lisa Braunwell, who lives on Lee Place in Amity Harbor, says she's seen flooding 12 times in the past year alone. That's why Braunwell and some neighbors say plans to build a house on a nearby vacant lot are foolish.

The nonprofit Long Island Housing Partnership, which builds affordable housing, obtained the property after the house previously there was destroyed by Superstorm Sandy. Long Island Housing Partnership now plans to build a single-family, three-bedroom home there.

Neighbors say their opposition has nothing to do with an elevated house blocking their water view or that it's an affordable house -- they argue that any house construction will worsen their flooding problem.

"If they build a house here...the rainwater is going to rush right down onto my property," says Jill Schiereck.

James Britz, of Long Island Housing Partnership, says they'll make sure to work with all necessary parties to ensure that doesn't happen.

When it rains, water from the street is supposed to go down drains and into the bay. But at high tide with heavy rain, neighbors say the water backs up into the drain.

If the plans are approved by the Town of Babylon, first-time home buyers with an annual income between $70,000 and $100,000 will be eligible to buy the house.

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