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Islip to vote on land sale for sports complex

This illustration shows the town-owned acreage along Carleton

This illustration shows the town-owned acreage along Carleton Avenue that the Islip Town Board is to vote on whether to sell for $3.5 million. If the sale goes through, the property would become the Ultimate Game Indoor/Outdoor Sports Complex, the expected home of the Long Island Lizards lacrosse team. Credit: Handout, 2012

The Islip Town Board will vote Tuesday on a proposal allowing Supervisor Tom Croci to negotiate a $3.5 million contract for the sale of a town-owned parcel in Central Islip that could be the new home of the Long Island Lizards.

If the sale goes through, the 30 acres of surplus property would become the Ultimate Game Indoor/Outdoor Sports Complex, which would include a series of outdoor turf fields, a 6,000-seat stadium and a 200,000-square-foot indoor complex.

"It's a shot in the arm to the taxpayer," said Councilman Steven J. Flotteron, who has helped facilitate the pending deal. "I'm getting a stadium built and putting it on the tax roll. To me, that's dramatic."

Andy Borgia, who is developing the site just west of Carleton Avenue, across the street from Bethpage Ballpark, home of the Long Island Ducks baseball team, did not respond to a message seeking comment. He has said as recently as last summer that he hoped to lure the Lizards, a major league lacrosse team, to his $45 million facility.

Borgia signed a 50-year, $65,000 annual lease with the town about three years ago, Flotteron said, but recently expressed interest in buying the property outright. The purchase would enhance Borgia's ability to gain financing and interest from the Lizards or other teams, town officials said.

Borgia entered into a PILOT agreement with the town to pay $50,000 annually in property taxes. The current agreement runs for the duration of the lease, but if the property were purchased, the board would consider a new agreement that could net the town more tax money, Flotteron said.

The site currently has land used by the town's Department of Public Works and several athletic fields.

Contingent on the sale, town officials said, is the completion of a $2 million project to build seven new Little League fields and a concession stand on nearby Eastview Drive. Town officials said the new fields, which would replace current fields on the site of the proposed project, are nearly complete.

The addition of the planned sports complex would rival other sports venues on Long Island, officials said.

"We're becoming bigger than Mitchel Field," Flotteron said. "Central Islip is going to be known as an athletic community -- our own minor league Meadowlands."

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