March 2, 2023 – Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter presented her annual State of the Town address Wednesday, standing firm against recent proposals from Albany that could diminish local autonomy and push aside local zoning laws. The Supervisor also announced plans for a new Town Comprehensive Plan, and reemphasized the policies and programs that have helped Islip thrive these past eight years.
In her address titled, “Manufacturing the Future,” Supervisor Carpenter emphasized the role of government to enable individuals to craft their own bright tomorrow, affording them a voice in the policies that directly affect their quality of life. She noted, “This is what home rule is all about—the autonomy to best govern, by the people who know their hometown best.”
Highlighting the power of local government at work, Supervisor Carpenter announced the formation of a new comprehensive long-term policy plan, that will focus on critical areas such as housing, the environment and job creation. “It’s been 46 years since the last Comprehensive Plan was adopted, but today’s world is far different than it was in 1977,” said Supervisor Carpenter. “The creation of a new Town Comprehensive Plan will be an opportunity for our residents, stakeholders, elected officials, and planning professionals alike, to come together to develop a shared vision for our Town’s growth,” the Supervisor added.
The Supervisor also noted major housing projects already underway across the Town, which have transformed sites previously in disrepair and off the tax rolls, into desirable housing communities where young adults and empty-nesters alike want to live. “In total we have over 2,000 resident units in various stages of development across this great Town, ranging from preconstruction, to having their CO in hand,” said Islip Supervisor Angie Carpenter. “Islip is growing—smartly—in conjunction with our civic groups, at a pace and in a direction that makes sense for our Town’s unique identity,” the Supervisor added.
Turning to the economy, Supervisor Carpenter referenced over $1 Billion in capital investments and more than 9,000 jobs added during her tenure, highlighting that the Town is home to more than 10,000 businesses, despite remaining primarily residential.
Supervisor Carpenter also announced efforts to transform Long Island MacArthur Airport (ISP) into a real transportation HUB, and reiterated the significance of the proposed Midway Crossing Development, which would enhance Long Island’s intellectual corridor and provide jobs in cutting-edge medical technology, STEM, travel and entertainment. “This has the potential of being one of the most significant and innovative projects the Long Island region has considered in decades, with the ability to position LI nationally as a life sciences hub, as well as inject billions of dollars annually into the economic region,” said Supervisor Carpenter, adding, “A lot of the infrastructure needs must be addressed, however, before any of this can happen.”
Touching on recent development projects completed and underway in the Town, Supervisor Carpenter noted the ongoing transformation of Roberto Clemente Park in Brentwood, which will, this Spring, see the unveiling of a plaza style Skate Park, in addition to the state-of-the-art spray park, and Olympic sized swimming pool added in recent years. Also underway, Ross Park in Brentwood, Sayville Marina Park, and the renovation of Byron Lake Park, Oakdale, will transform long-neglected assets into true community gems.
The Supervisor additionally announced rehabilitation to the Town’s waterways, beginning with the needed dredging of Brown’s River East and Brown’s River West in Sayville, as well as the West Islip Marina, where a larger renovation, including bulkheading, renovated boat ramps, and boat slip dredging, is planned.
Supervisor Carpenter also noted the success of the Bay Bottom Licensing Program, a highlight of the Town’s environmental commitment, tying ecological stewardship alongside economic growth. Each Oyster alone can filter up to 50 gallons per day, and in 2020 the Town’s program was responsible for 20% of total shellfish production in all of New York State. Phase 3 of the program has received State approval, and this new phase will see operations expand from 125 acres to over 1,300 acres. “As good stewards of the environment, we’ve made it our priority to care for, protect and improve one of our strongest environmental assets: The Great South Bay.”
Alongside environmental commitments, Supervisor Carpenter reiterated the Town’s commitment to smart and responsible financial stewardship, stating, “After successfully getting our bond-rating upgraded to Aaa with a stable outlook—our Town has received seven consecutive such ratings—the highest possible. This is thanks to our zero-based budgeting, assuring that no projects move forward unless they are deemed truly essential.”
The state of our Town is “strong,” noted Supervisor Carpenter, “Our communities’ greatest strengths are the rich and diverse backgrounds of all our residents . . . When I was sworn in eight years ago, today, I vowed—working together with all of you—to change the direction of our Town, to improve our financials, clean up our parks, preserve our environment and build for the future.”
Looking to the horizon, Supervisor Carpenter reiterated the importance of each individual’s voice in the role of government, and the importance of local government to maintain their autonomy to govern on the people’s behalf.
“I will continue to fight for Islip’s ability to decide its own future; to plan, design and build our own tomorrow; and keep the power of your voice in local government from being drowned out by Albany, and I hope you will join me,” said Supervisor Carpenter.
“We’re just getting started,” the Supervisor concluded, “you might even say, now we’re cooking with gas.”
The Supervisor’s address will be available to be viewed in its entirety on public access Channel 18 (Cablevision) and Channel 1982 (Verizon), as well as the Town of Islip YouTube Channel.