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Jun 16, 2010 11:13 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Westhampton Beach business faces fine for allowing bus company to use its parking lot as a terminal

Jun 16, 2010 11:13 AM

A Westhampton Beach business owner has been slapped with a violation for allowing a private charter bus company to use his parking lot as a terminal, village officials said.

Richard Rubio, the owner of Manhattan Motorcars of the Hamptons and Westhampton Coachworks, has been allowing Hampton Luxury Liner buses to utilize the parking lot for his businesses on Old Riverhead Road as pick-up and drop-off point for passengers without village approval, according to the Westhampton Beach Building Department.

Mr. Rubio’s business is in the B-3 zoning district, explained Paul Houlihan, the village building and zoning administrator. That business zoning does allow for public passenger facilities, including bus terminals, but the Westhampton Beach Planning Board must sign off first, he said. Mr. Rubio never submitted a site plan change application to the village, according to Mr. Houlihan.

“They don’t have any approvals for that stop,” Mr. Houlihan said, adding that his department plans on issuing a summons this week. The Building Department issued a notice of violation on June 9.

Mr. Rubio declined to comment when reached this week and referred all questions to his attorney, David J. Gilmartin of Gilmartin & Bregman in Southampton. Mr. Gilmartin said that they are taking steps to submit an application to the village’s Planning Board.

“He’s working on an application to be submitted very soon,” he said, noting that the application could be filed within the next week.

Mr. Gilmartin said Mr. Rubio never sought village approval before allowing the bus company to use his parking lot as a terminal because he thought such a use was permitted.

Jennifer Friebely, a spokeswoman for Hampton Luxury Liner, which is based in Bridgehampton, said company officials did not know that village approval was required when they reached an agreement with Mr. Rubio in April. Buses started using the parking lot as a terminal over Memorial Day weekend, she said.

“We weren’t aware that there is a site plan issue,” Ms. Friebely said. “We were under the impression that everything was fine.”

She explained that no cash was exchanged as part of the agreement. Rather, in exchange for allowing Hampton Luxury Liner to utilize his lot, Mr. Rubio received free advertising on the bus company’s literature, according to Ms. Friebely.

The bus company, which transports people between Manhattan and the East End, will do what it can to help address the violation, Ms. Friebely said. One of the company’s buses picks up and drops off passengers in the parking lot behind Manhattan Motorcars of the Hamptons, off the Rogers Avenue Extension, but only stops there if a reservation is made. A bus can stop there up to 10 times a week, she said.

Mr. Houlihan noted that there is no guarantee that Mr. Rubio will secure village approval, noting that his parking lot might be too small to accommodate the large passenger buses.

Building Department officials first learned of the issue after Hampton Luxury Liner began advertising the new stop in Westhampton Beach. They then waited outside the business on two consecutive Sundays—June 6 and June 13—to document the situation, Mr. Houlihan said.

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Is this really a big deal?

I'd rather get dropped off and picked up there than in Manorville!
By Hambone (514), New York on Jun 23, 10 11:24 PM
It'll be very convenient having Michael Lohan's nightclub there too.
I don't see a building permit posted for all the other work going on. Do the Building Department, the Planning Department, the Zoning Department and the Trustees do anything to protect Village tax payers?

By Resident (42), Westhampton Beach on Jun 24, 10 6:45 AM
No it's not really a big deal Hambone. But it is when sociopaths like Dick Rubio continually do things with out permission. I think in his head....He thinks he's some sort of Mexican Mobster or Drug Cartel!!! That RULES do NOT apply to him. And is very convincing at making people think that all he does is for the greater good of the community! More like for his own pockets. Did you happen to read the part of the article where it says he's getting free advertising on the buses in exchange for ...more
By F. Hugh (2), WHB on Jun 25, 10 5:48 PM
The Hampton Jitney had a stop there when The Q
By shock (70), whb on Jun 25, 10 11:33 PM
The Hampton Jitney stopped there when The Quogue Emporium was in that same locaton.It was a convenient stop, and now with the constructon going on at the airport it makes sense that there is an alternative stop for anyone looking for another opton in their commute to and from WHB.
By shock (70), whb on Jun 25, 10 11:36 PM