State and Town Leaders Tour Smithtown’s Downtown Business Districts to Discuss Increased Federal Funding Support from the US Senate
Long Island Regional Director for Senator Chuck Schumer Mike Iannelli joined NYS Senator Mario Mattera, Assemblyman Michael Fitzpatrick, Supervisor Ed Wehrheim, and Smithtown Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Barbara Franco in a tour and in-depth discussion covering the progress of wastewater infrastructure development throughout the township. The host of state, local and community leaders discussed the vital need for additional funding to complete major infrastructure projects in downtown Smithtown in order to revitalize the flagship hamlet’s business district. Additionally, the group explored the completed projects in St. James, as well as construction plans for Kings Park, which are currently underway.
“I want to thank Senator Mattera, who worked tirelessly and in lockstep with Smithtown to coordinate this vital tour with Mr. Iannelli. We covered quite a bit of ground ranging from our track record of completed revitalization work, partnerships with Suffolk County and the State, as well as what is needed financially to complete the sewer construction and revitalization along Main Street in Smithtown. I’d also be remiss if I didn’t take time to recognize the outstanding work and dedication which Suffolk County Deputy County Executive and Water Czar Peter Scully has done over a span of the last four years to get us to where we are at present. It was an absolute pleasure to collaborate with Mr. Iannelli. Together with support from our community, businesses and fellow government leadership, I am confident that we will be able to provide the much needed infrastructure which is critical to protecting our waterways, drinking water and economic strength for future generations to thrive in Smithtown.” - Supervisor Ed Wehrheim, Town of Smithtown
The group went over the timeline of events, research and community support which has led to the path of implementing wastewater infrastructure and a plan for revitalization in all three business districts throughout the Town of Smithtown. Supervisor Ed Wehrheim presented a roadmap and funding requests to complete a plan for sewer installation, connection and revitalization of the Downtown Smithtown Business District, as well as what is needed for Suffolk County to connect the St. James Business District to Sewer Treatment District #28 at Fairfield St. James. Additionally, Supervisor Wehrheim defined the plan for Downtown Kings Park, the funding sources in place and the need for streetscape funds to complete the revitalization.
“I thank Mr. Iannelli for taking the time to join us on behalf of Senator Schumer for this important tour. Supervisor Wehrheim, along with all the elected officials in the Town of Smithtown, have done an excellent job revitalizing the Town by forging a vision that is exactly what the residents deserve. That has created new opportunities for all who live here and created jobs for our hardworking men and women of labor. As we move forward, it is vital to include every level of government to find the solutions our mutual residents need and this tour is a great stop in that process. I look forward to working with all involved to deliver a great future for all in our region.” - Senator Mario Mattera, New York State Senator
In 2017, Governor Cuomo announced two $20 million grants under the State’s Transformative Investment Program (TIP), one to connect the Kings Park Business District to Suffolk County Sewer District No. 6 in Kings Park, and the other to bring sewers to the Smithtown Business District. In May of this year, County Executive Steve Bellone announced an additional $13 million in American Rescue Plan aid funds for the Town of Smithtown. Of the funds awarded, $10 million will go towards the construction funding for Smithtown’s Business District, with the remaining $3 Million going towards connecting the St. James Business District to Sewer Treatment District #28 at Fairfield. The funds will support the continued efforts to secure an estimated total of $90 million needed to connect properties along Main Street in Smithtown to an expanded treatment plant at Suffolk County Sewer District No. 6 in Kings Park.
Currently, many businesses along Main Street in Smithtown are forced to pump outdated septic systems on a monthly basis, which is eating away at the economic success of dining establishments, entertainment spaces, local retail, medical and office space. Additionally, these outdated septic systems cause nitrogen pollution which can result in harmful algal blooms, and fish die-offs in local waterways. Securing the remaining funding for critical wastewater infrastructure remains a time-sensitive mission of the Smithtown administration, County, State and Federal government leadership and the community at large.