Huntington Town Supervisor Chad Lupinacci, during his last week of his term in office, issued a statement looking back on his administration and its accomplishments.
Key Accomplishments (Statement Below):
- Maintained AAA bond rating through all four years, producing budgets under the Tax Cap and achieving Zero Fiscal Stress, even during and post-COVID-19
- Established the first Bureau of Administrative Adjudication on Long Island and the third in New York State, cutting red tape and adding efficiency
- Settled the decade-long LIPA lawsuit, which threatened to bankrupt the Town, negotiating the most favorable terms any municipality has ever achieved
- Dedicated $22 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds to the Huntington Station Hub Sewer Project, which will help encourage long-overdue economic investment and job creation in downtown Huntington Station
- Critical infrastructure improvements, including roads, commuter parking, water treatment, and waterfront facilities, with many improvements done in-house
- Enacted term limits for all Town elected officials
- Made Town Board meetings more accessible, adding evening meetings and live-streaming meetings
- Increased government transparency, improving communication of important Town meetings and public hearings via TV, web and social media
- Strengthened the Town’s Ethics Code and financial disclosure requirements, and enhanced the independence of the Ethics Board from Town leadership
- Onboarded all public-facing Town Departments to the "At Your Service" self-serve online ticket portal
- Integrated with the Suffolk County Clerk's Office to make all land deeds filed since 1987 available to our Professional Geographic Information System (GIS) users
- Implemented new regulations on the size and density of buildings in C-6 Zoned mixed-use developments, also addressing parking congestion
- Fully funded the design and construction of the James D. Conte Community Center and Manor Field Spray Park
- Acquired property at northwest corner of New York Avenue and Gerard Street in Huntington Village to increase municipal parking
- Launched the Passport Parking app at the Huntington LIRR train station and Huntington village to simplify metered parking payment
- Enacted pro-business initiatives to help speed up economic recovery efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic
- Enacted "Adopt-a-Corner" beautification initiative allowing residents and organizations to adopt, beautify and maintain a select piece of roadside property
- Opened the lottery process for Columbia Terrace, a 14-unit affordable veterans condominium development in Huntington Station
- Enacted quality of life changes to Town Zoning Code, strengthening the Town’s ability to curb illegal activity and improve public safety
- Added new plaques with 365 Huntington veterans’ names to the World War II Memorial
- Made ADA-accessible improvements at playgrounds and beaches throughout the Town
- Established Juneteenth as an observed holiday, even before the Federal government began observing it as such
- Reestablished the African American Advisory Task Force and established the Asian American Advisory Task Force
Statement by Huntington Town Supervisor Chad A. Lupinacci (term 2018-2021):
“I must thank our outstanding Town workers, and my Town Board colleagues, for all they have done to help make the new direction vision a reality. Looking back, I am proud that I will leave the Town of Huntington in a far better place than when I took office – few administrations have faced as many challenges and few have achieved what we have in four years:
“We delivered on promises to enact term limits for all Town elected officials, enacted ethics reforms and made Town Board meetings more accessible by adding evening meetings to the schedule and live-streaming meetings online and on TV. We increased government transparency, improving communication of important Town meetings and public hearings online, on TV, and on social media.
“Many measures were passed to protect quality of life, preserve the suburban charm of our Town, and expand economic opportunity. We streamlined government operations, expanded online services and cut red tape to assist Code Enforcement more efficiently respond to complaints of noise pollution, public safety hazards, and other nuisance code violations. We created the Town of Huntington Bureau of Administrative Adjudication, the first town court of its kind on Long Island, to efficiently adjudicate violations of the Huntington Town Code.
“We produced a Tax Cap-compliant budget every year and ours was one of the very few that came in under the Tax Cap in the face of a global economic crisis. This financial achievement is underscored by the yearly renewal of the Town’s AAA-stable bond rating and confirmed yearly the by New York State Comptroller’s Fiscal Stress Monitoring System (FSMS) report, which highlighted both the Town's strong financial position when the COVID-19 crisis hit and our fiscally sound operations in its aftermath.
“We ended the catastrophic threat posed by the decade-long LIPA tax certiorari lawsuit. I promised not to settle for the offer on the table in 2017, committing to explore every feasible legal option and fight for a better deal, which we achieved in 2020 in unprecedented form after many settlement offers were rejected. The terms of the LIPA settlement proposal accepted by the Town Board in September 2020 were far superior than any previous terms proposed to the Town or negotiated by any other municipality in similar litigation.
“Carefully crafting a plan to protect the historic aesthetics, quality of life and economic function of Huntington’s historic downtowns, we proposed code changes aimed to control the density of mixed-use buildings with apartments in commercially-zoned downtown areas, alleviate burdens on our infrastructure, and address the long-time parking congestion issue plaguing the Huntington Village Hamlet Center. After a lengthy public input period, sweeping measures were enacted in 2020 regulating mixed-use development in Huntington Village and our other downtowns and established new site plan review requirements to avoid overburdening our roads, sewer systems and stormwater infrastructure; we delivered on another campaign promise.
“We worked diligently to expand property rights and help improve the cost of living for all Huntington residents, enacting sweeping changes to the accessory apartment code that have made more homeowners eligible for legal accessory apartments, expand options for homeowners on fixed incomes or those who want to downsize, and increase the affordable rental supply.
“We took many steps to protect and expand open space, preserve farmland and protect our drinking water. Our administration focused on major infrastructure repairs, including roads, commuter parking, sewers, sewage treatment and stormwater management facilities. We initiated the cost-effective revitalization of our waterfront facilities and our waterfront economy, making decades-long overdue improvements, largely in-house, to make our marinas and waterways safer and to protect our shorelines.
“Major steps have been taken to greenify Town operations, with a focus on grant-funded investments in renewable energy and the delivery on a promise that preceded his administration: the move to electric and battery-powered landscaping equipment for the maintenance of Heckscher Park, Huntington Town Hall and other Town properties to reduce noise pollution and environmentally hazardous emissions. Legislatively, we enacted limitations on the acceptable hours of gas leaf blower use.
“Our response to the COVID-19 pandemic required quick decision-making and vision to protect our residents, businesses, front line workers and Town employees. We developed a comprehensive plan to safely reopen facilities and deliver important services to our residents. Starting early in the COVID-19 pandemic, we worked with our small business community to implement new, fee-free processes and procedures to assist small businesses recover and keep their doors open while complying with State-imposed COVID-19 restrictions.
“The revitalization of the long-underserved Huntington Station community has been a priority of my administration and one of our final, most significant accomplishments is the funding of the Huntington Station Hub Sewer Project with $22 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds, matched by Suffolk County’s ARPA funds for a joint historic effort that will encourage economic investment south of the train tracks for decades to come.
“We supported, initiated, expanded public art projects, including Traffic Signal Box Art, the Black History Public Art Initiative, the annual Summer Arts Festival, and the restoration of the Heckscher Museum exterior and the Town’s collection within the museum.
“We stood united during trying times and made progress in the preservation of our diverse local history, including the archeological study at the Peter Crippen House, and an engineering study to determine how the structure can be salvaged for the purposes of educating the public on Huntington’s Black history. We established Juneteenth as an observed holiday even before the Federal government began observing it as such. We honored our first woman Town Supervisor, Toni Rettaliata, by renaming Dix Hills Park in her honor, and honored notable African American, Women, First Responder and other notable residents with street and facility renamings.
“I am proud of our administration’s work to streamline operations and cut red tape while providing for the seamless delivery of essential services before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. We provided cost-effective, accountable government services to residents and businesses by listening to the needs of our community, utilizing shared services, taking a creative approach to problem-solving and utilizing conservative budgeting practices.
“This is just some of what we achieved together. I feel a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that in one term as Town Supervisor, I delivered on all of my campaign promises and again, I thank our employees, my Town Board colleagues and our residents for allowing me to serve.”