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After years of not being able to find a buyer for her Saddle River mansion, Rosie O’Donnell finally caved and sold her home at a loss, The Post has learned.

 

But the home’s next residents are already causing a stir in the tony neighborhood, home to the rich and famous, from rapper Ja Rule to singer Mary J. Blige.

The six-bedroom, nine-bathroom abode is expected to be demolished and turned into a series of affordable housing units per a landmark public court settlement with Fair Share Housing Center.

But the agreement has left its upscale residents outraged.

According to an unnamed source who lives in the area and was familiar with the proceedings, the borough had plans to comply with the affordable housing requirements in Saddle River. The requirements usually include sites that are 100% affordable.

However, in this case, local developers Saddle River Investors intervened, court docs show.

And their intervention only “added insult to injury,” the source said.

As part of a fair housing court settlement between the borough of Saddle River and the Fair Share Housing Center of NJ, the 5-acre lot that belonged to O’Donnell will be converted into 60 units — of which only 20% will be used for affordable housing.

Essentially, the source said, “the developer plans to segregate the units, instead of integrating them with the high density multi-family housing.” While there is no legal requirement that the units be integrated, residents say the current plan doesn’t sit well with them. Saddle River Investors has declined to comment on the matter. 

The property spans over 9,000 square feet and sits on 5 acres of land. via Realtor

The insider explained that of the 60 units in the plan, “only eight are set for low and moderate income and the developer will stick the eight units in the back corner of the property instead of integrating, so everyone will know these are the homes saved for the poor.” 

The controversy calls to mind similar issues over affordable housing, such as the so-called “poor door” at the upscale Lincoln Square Tower in Manhattan.

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“It’s a very complex issue,” the resident said. “Fair Share Housing decided to make Saddle River its example.”

Bergen County court records reveal the case — including the 20% affordable housing stipulation — was settled when the borough agreed to include O’Donnell’s property and two other neighboring properties that span 10 acres.

“It makes no sense and it’s creating a further divide between the wealthiest and the non [wealthiest],” they added. “There is not even public transportation here!”

O’Donnell, 59, sold the property at a $1 million loss for $5.3 million on March 17 after five years on the market, according to an insider. The actress, who is currently filming the new season of Showtime’s “The L Word,” first bought the home in 2013 for $6.3 million. 

O’Donnell currently resides in an $8 million, four-bedroom, three-bathroom luxury New York City penthouse in Midtown.

Her rep has not responded to The Post’s request for comment. 

The grand foyer. via Realtor

New Jersey State Senator and former resident of Saddle River, Holly Schepisi, who now lives in a nearby town is also up in arms over the project. 

“The town itself is against [it] but they had no choice,” Schepisi told The Post, adding that the area may not be hospitable to those on a limited income.

“Everything is out of pocket here,” Schepisi said. “Pay out of pocket for sports, schools… how is somebody with very little income viable to live in this town?”

Anthony Campisi, communications rep at the Fair Share Housing Center told The Post that Saddle River had an “obligation to zone.” 

The home features an in-ground pool with grotto waterfall, a plunge pool and a Jacuzzi spa.via Realtor

“It’s one of the most exclusive towns in the country,” Campisi explained. “Our role didn’t have to do with the sale itself. We negotiated a housing agreement and the town allowed the redevelopment on O’Donnell’s site. It is a prime piece of real-estate leverage for affordable housing.”

The home is currently pending a purchase by the Bergen County Borough through Saddle River Investors. Here’s a look at the space now at the center of debate in the community.

The home has been renovated with modern finishes since it was first built in 1928. via realtor.com

With the property spanning 9,173 square feet, the colonial home also included a separate full service year-round guesthouse with a dining room, living room/bedroom, two baths, laundry and kitchen. Other amenities of the home included a basketball court and an elevator.

The soon-to-be former estate featured an in-ground pool with a grotto waterfall, a plunge pool and a Jacuzzi spa.

The property is made up of six-bedrooms and eight-bathrooms.

realtor.com

The master suite includes a completely revamped and wide-scale walk-in closet.

realtor.com

The property sits on over five acres of land.

realtor.com

The formal living room is adorned with wall-to-wall windows.

realtor.com

The entire estate comes with a basketball court and separate guest house.

realtor.com

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April 7, 2021 Filed under Celebrity Real Estate ,  new jersey ,  Real Estate ,  residential real estate ,  rosie odonnell ,  4/7/21

News Source: New York Post

Tags: search rosie o donnell celebrity real estate new jersey real estate residential real estate rosie o donnell rosie o’donnell a basketball court for affordable housing to be demolished court settlement saddle river the source said realtor com rosie odonnell acres of land turned into out of pocket told the post bergen county the developer the property the property units is currently between the home the borough square feet gang member six bedroom real estate real estate living room

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LA Board of Education members eat, check phones while mom pleads for school reopening

In an emotional phone call to the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), a mother pleaded with county officials to reopen schools and playgrounds – but her appeal was seemingly ignored.

In a video posted to social media by UTLA Uncensored this week, LA board members ate and checked their phones as an upset parent begged for the classrooms to be reopened.

TEACHERS UNION BOSS SLAMMED OVER TONE-DEAF TWEET ON MOMS LEAVING WORKFORCE

The crux of her plea was for the school board to abandon the United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) union, and focus on the needs of southern California children.

"I’m here to tell you that I have been silenced by UTLA," she told the members. "Because my narrative goes against what they are trying to push."

"My children, and thousands of others, are being held hostage by this organization," she continued.

While elementary schools reopened last week, middle and high school students will not return to the classroom until later in the month.

Parents remain frustrated by hybrid schedules students face, forcing them to continue to juggle being home with the children and managing their careers.

"We see the minutes of instruction and we see the quality of the zoom instruction, and it does not equal a good education," the mother told LAUSD board members. "I’m doing the majority of work at home."

"I am sickened by the fact that you have allowed your doors to stay closed for so long and you have no sense of urgency," she continued as one board member bent over to eat. "The disservice you have done to these children is beyond me."

In recent months, reports have surfaced of teachers unions across the nation utilizing the coronavirus pandemic to vie for increased wages and benefits – frustrating angry parents.

Jonathon Zachreson, a California parent who launched one of the largest petitions in the country to reopen schools, said he believes unions are operating "under the guise of safety" to prioritize member needs over children's education.

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"These teachers unions are wasting time negotiating more funds, using our kids as bargaining chips," he told Fox News.

Fox News could not immediately reach the UTLA for comment.

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