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Supe Blasts DEC Over EPCAL Delays, Advocates Job Creation

Congressman Tim Bishop said Governor Andrew Cuomo has been asked to help reach a compromise.

After months of delays, Congressman Tim Bishop said this week that New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo's assistance has been sought to help broker a workable compromise between Riverhead Town and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation regarding the future of Enterprise Park at Calverton.

“Responsible economic development and local jobs is a top priority for all of us, and I am committed along with Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand to helping facilitate a dialogue among the Town Board of Riverhead, the supervisor, the DEC and the governor’s office regarding EPCAL," Bishop said this week.

For months, progress has been slow going regarding the proposed subdivision map for EPCAL. Riverhead Town Supervisor Sean Walter said Friday that the wait has been too long, especially for residents who are unemployed and crying out for jobs.

"We’re trying to work get this subdivision broken free from the DEC," Walter said. "Right now, what the town believes is developable area and what the DEC believes is developable are not even on the same planet."

What's needed, Walter said, is for some outside intervention "to help the DEC recognize that the property was more than 6000 acres -- and 3000 acres were given to DEC," to preseve grassland.

The remainder of the parcel, Walter said, was always meant to be utilized toward fostering economic development. "It’s not about not protecting the environment -- we did that first," Walter said. "Now it's about jobs, jobs, jobs."

As Riverhead town supervisor, Walter said it's his obligation to help provide jobs when so many are out of work.  "For all the people that are unemployed and need to pay their bills -- this land was given to them, for economic development. We need any help we can get to tell the DEC that the grass is not sancrosanct. You have your grass -- this isn't your grass. This is about jobs."

The DEC, Walter said, has "come up with a scenario" that is not conducive to job creation. "The DEC," Walter said, "moves the ball. It's a shell game to them."

Walter said another meeting between Town Hall staff and the DEC is slated for early next week. After than, he plans to take the subdivision plan to the town board, with some minor revisions and modifications.

"It's time to move the ball forward," Walter said, adding that it's his hope that the DEC gives the town lead agency status. "We've wasted six months. We can't waste any more time on the subdivision map before we do the environmental review."

Of the DEC, Walter added, "They're the masters of trying to make everyone believe they're the final arbiters of protecting the environment. But at the same time, eight percent of poeple on the East End are out of work -- and there are thousands of people who are barely paying their bills. I've got to watch the ball for them -- and that's what I intend to do."

John Pine October 20, 2012 at 04:22 AM
Oh Please. EPCAL is in the Pine Barrens Core Preservation area and any new building is strictly prohibited in the area. Especially when it comes to the illegal clearing of Pine Barrens that Riverhead wants to do. Walter claims the construction will "create jobs". Yeah but who will be getting those jobs? Taking a look at most construction jobs they use illegal day laborers, of which the supply in and around Riverhead Town is plentiful. People should be saying "NO" when it comes to removing any forest or grassland at EPCAL. The development will benefit nobody, except greedy developers and lining the pockets of various Riverhead town officials. This is one of the few rural looking areas left on Long Island, once its gone, we may as well be living in the city.
Terrence Mckeever October 20, 2012 at 12:28 PM
Look at what I'm trying to do it's election time.
eugene frohnhoefer October 20, 2012 at 12:28 PM
Of course Bishop and Schumer and Gillibrand are willing to help. It's an election year for two of the three. But all the time they are voting for the passage of more and more restrictions and Green Stimulus monies to failing and failed companies. All three put up smoke screens during an election year. During a recent interview Gillibrand said she was pro second ammendment yet votes for all anti-gun legislation. Don't be fooled by the, timely, support of these three politicans.
Bob Mannara October 20, 2012 at 12:56 PM
we need a race track facility in EPCAL.When the economy was good .The riverhead meatball politicians were considering a indoor ski mountain.Remember that !! Now that the economy is in the toilet .we need jobs .We always need jobs. We need a industry that will supply jobs and retail as well.We need a race track Facility.There are hundreds of custom auto shops ,engine builders .body shops and manufacturing shops on Long Island that will benefit from a race facility and supply JOBS for all of us.Wake up and smell the Coffee.Stupid Politicians !!!!!!!!!
Walter S October 22, 2012 at 02:39 AM
I personally feel a high tech industrial park would be good for this land. Semiconductors, manufacturing and the like- those ARE the good paying jobs. We have BNL and all the research that goes on there should be creating the ideas needed for companies that could be located there on EPCAL. EPCAL has a rail hub and an airstrip- how great is that for a silicon valley here on Long Island. These politicians have to offer companies no tax if they hire x-amount of employees in order for them to come here whereas the employees pay income tax. We need politicians that can and are able to work with these companies. Secondly though, all I here in this election cycle is the lack of jobs, 23 million out of work. In my 30 years of driving the LIE at 6:30am I have never seen as much traffic as I see now and it seems to get worse every year. Secondary roads are bumper to bumper.People driving the LIE at this hour are going to work. There seems to be a big disconnect between what I see and what politicians are saying.
Longisland Needsadragstrip December 22, 2012 at 11:49 PM
once again another bad project by walter & bishop . polls show that the residents of long island polled want motorsports @ calverton !!!!! a attraction to suffolk county bring $$ in see surrounding areas in daytona beach ,, we have enough ultra high end house & super malls in suffolk
Longisland Needsadragstrip December 22, 2012 at 11:50 PM
ski moutain & casio >???????? what happend there polls show the people of suffolk didnt want that either !!!!!!!!!!!!
Longisland Needsadragstrip December 22, 2012 at 11:55 PM
hey walter big corps arent coming here for that suffolk pushed entemanns out & grumman just has offices here if anything hi tek goes here it wil be a office building with a bunch of guys in white shirts we have a serious problem here bishop & walter need to go ,....
Longisland Needsadragstrip December 23, 2012 at 12:00 AM
some info about tim bishop http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOLs7Cybnqw

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