Some Jericho neighbors concerned of motel plans for homeless
There is a new push to put a roof over the heads of Long Islanders who lost their homes due to the pandemic, but not everyone is open to one effort specifically.
Some Jericho residents, like Jing Huo, are pushing back on a plan to turn an old Hampton Inn Hotel into transitional housing for Nassau County families who are homeless.
"I'm very shocked. This decision has a lack of transparency so we don't know nothing about it," he said.
County Commissioner of Department of Social Services Nancy Nunziata says the number of homeless people in Nassau County has increased by roughly 20% since the beginning of the pandemic.
"The real trick is to give them the life skills and the ability so that they maintain themselves," said Nunziata. "We don't want to see people come back into the system."
Officials say 80 families will begin moving into the facility located at the intersection of Brush Hollow Road and Jericho Turnpike in a few weeks. It will be run by the nonprofit organization Community Housing Innovations, also known as CHI, on an annual budget of $6 million.
Nassau County Executive Laura Curran says 19 children from the facility are expected to attend Jericho schools. Some neighbors say that could be a tremendous burden on the district.
"After six months when those families move, their kids still have a right to remain in the district. The accumulation of these kids is going to grow so large that eventually it could crash the Jericho School District," Huo said.