A proposal for a poultry slaughterhouse has raised a variety of concerns among Islip Town residents who say they worry about health issues, smells, vermin and noise from such an operation.
One resident said the possibility the business targeting Beaver Dam Road has led residents of the area south of Heckscher State Parkway to build an online coalition to fight it.
"We are distraught over the idea," said Samantha Roche, 36, who lives on Beaver Dam Road, a few blocks from the proposed site. "There are other commercial sites that are more appropriate" for the area.
Roche began an email campaign contacting elected officials, including Islip Councilwoman Mary Kate Mullen and state Sen. Phil Boyle (R-Bay Shore), to help fight the proposal.
The letter states, “We love our neighborhood and do not want to see our quality of life deteriorate.”
Some of the worries include rats, mice and bugs at the property, toxins and nauseating smells emitting from the property, potential diseases and parasites spread by the birds and declining property values.
A Facebook group named Islip Residents Against Slaughter House had more than 200 members as of Sunday. According to the group's description, it "has been formed to share information on the proposed slaughterhouse and unite Islip residents that are opposed to the application."
Roche said neighbors plan to attend town zoning board of appeals meeting about the proposal scheduled for Tuesday.
Joseph Rosario, of Huntington, is named as the applicant on the proposal. He could not be reached for comment.
The application says the business intends to remain open six days a week and closed on Sundays. The application outlines some of its protocols.
"All waste is self-contained in special, refrigerated walk-in boxes and regularly removed professionally by a private company. No odor, vermin or insects will be tolerated on or near the premises. ... All processing of poultry will take place in a self-contained back room," the application states.
Half of the functions of the business will be delivery to restaurants and private homes, according to the application.
Other slaughterhouses have been proposed on Long Island.
Suffolk County’s Department of Economic Development in summer 2017 sought farmers, entrepreneurs or meat processors — or some combination of the three — to help reopen the unused slaughterhouse at its county farm in Yaphank.
The plan was meant to boost livestock production and serve restaurants that prefer meat from homegrown livestock.