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Islip Town appoints new environmental control commissioner

Martin Bellew, who had worked for New York City and Yonkers, will take over the department that also handles town recycling and animal control.

The Islip Town Board on Tuesday named a

The Islip Town Board on Tuesday named a new commissioner to lead the environmental control department. Photo Credit: Barry Sloan

The Islip Town Board this week appointed a new commissioner for the Department of Environmental Control.

The board on Tuesday named Martin J. Bellew to lead the department, which oversees the town’s handling of solid waste and recycling as well as environmental protection and animal control programs.

Bellew, 63, of Yonkers, will fill a vacancy left by James Heil, who is retiring on Oct. 1 after nearly three years in the role. Bellew will be paid $125,000 a year.

Bellew is currently an independent consultant on engineering and waste management, according to a copy of his resume. He previously served as acting commissioner for the City of Yonkers department of parks and recreation and as deputy commissioner for its public works department.

He spent 22 years with New York City’s sanitation department, including six as the director for the bureaus of waste disposal and solid waste engineering. 

He oversaw the disposal of material from the World Trade Center cleanup after 9/11 and managed the closure of the Fresh Kills landfill on Staten Island, according to his resume.

Bellew will also take Heil’s role as president of the Islip Town Resource Recovery Agency, which provides solid waste management services in the town.

Bellew could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.

The town board thanked Heil for his service at his last board meeting Tuesday.

“You took the residents of Islip to heart,” Councilman John Cochrane said.

Heil said he oversaw the plans for a new animal shelter, improvements at the recycling facility and new solar programs at capped landfills.

“It’s been a good run in Islip. I enjoyed it and got a lot done,” Heil said. “It’s time for new blood.”

Heil, 78, is retiring for the second time. He retired in 1995 as commissioner of waste management for Brookhaven Town and went on to work as a consultant. Heil, who made $115,000 in 2017, said he will not collect another state pension for his Islip retirement.

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