Angie Carpenter has been Islip Town supervisor for about eight months. It seems longer. That's a good thing. She has brought competence, maturity and accountability to a town reeling from illegal dumping at Roberto Clemente park and elsewhere in Islip.
Carpenter, 72, the former Suffolk County treasurer, took office in March after Tom Croci moved on to the State Senate. She oversaw the removal of debris from the park, replaced Islip's parks director and now waits for state officials to approve the town's plan to fill the hole.
Her opponent, Thomas Licari, 63, an attorney from Kismet making his first run for public office, approves of her work at Roberto Clemente. But he says the town moves too slowly on permit and zoning approvals, enforces codes in a way that discriminates against residents in places like Brentwood and Central Islip, and does not offer enough language services to Spanish speakers. Carpenter says she is sensitive to these issues but contends that complaints largely are baseless, and that some complainers seek to exploit perceived divisions rather than work together to solve problems. Still, she and the town would be well served to make sure rules are applied fairly and no area is overlooked.
Carpenter, of West Islip, is working to reinvigorate Long Island MacArthur Airport -- assembling funding for a customs center to allow international flights, talking to Southwest Airlines about adding routes and seeking more money for marketing. She also wants to put up for public vote a bond to pay for needed road repairs, infrastructure and parks.
Carpenter is an energetic pro with the steady hand needed to bring Islip back from the dumping scandal and financial turmoil.
Newsday endorses Carpenter.