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Babylon IDA behind schedule on survey of 1,700 businesses

Babylon Town hall in Lindenhurst is pictured on

Babylon Town hall in Lindenhurst is pictured on July 9, 2017. Credit: Steve Pfost

An effort by the Town of Babylon Industrial Development Agency to survey 1,700 industrial companies in the town is behind schedule, IDA officials said.

The sweeping project, meant to offer a broad portrait of the town’s industrial economy, has been delayed by its time-consuming methodology and the mixed response rate of the subject companies, agency CEO Matthew T. McDonough said.

“It’s actually taking us a lot longer than we thought it would,” McDonough said.

The IDA is a public benefit corporation conceived to protect and promote Babylon’s economy by providing tax breaks to local businesses. It undertook the study in February in an effort to have an up-to-date database of companies in Babylon — from wholesale bakers to aerospace manufacturers — and to better understand their needs and characteristics, McDonough said.

To complete the survey, Frank and Tom Dolan, two IDA employees, are going door-to-door in the town’s industrial areas. While the results of that survey were initially slated for publication in a report in August, the Dolans thus far have visited only about half of the 1,700 subject companies and will require another two months to wrap up the effort, McDonough said.

The Regional Plan Association, a Manhattan-based nonprofit, will still analyze the survey results and help produce the report as planned, McDonough said. He added that the group’s $30,000 fee, paid by the IDA, will not increase as a result of the delay.

The IDA still intends to reach out to all 1,700 companies, although it does not expect all to participate in the project, said McDonough, who now anticipates the report will be published in November.

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