Governor Cuomo announced today that the New York Islanders won the request for the proposal bid to redevelop Belmont Park in Elmont, NY. I want YOU, my friends and neighbors, to know that this is not the end of the process. Belmont Park is hundreds of acres of economic opportunity for Long Island that should embellish the horseracing industry already in place, while creating high paying jobs, in addition to improving the quality of life throughout the surrounding communities. Anything less is unacceptable.
The announcement of this mega project is premature and insulting. Our community is not a PowerPoint slide. Simply showing us a photo of this project is not the same as disclosing the real financial aspects of the Belmont Park Redevelopment. The community was left in the dark regarding financial details such as, how it will be funded and whether taxpayers will foot the bill. An announcement of a winner before these details were disclosed shows a lack of consideration and compassion for the residents of Elmont, Floral Park and its surrounding areas.
An arena is not smart development, especially when we, the Nassau County taxpayers, funded a renovation of the Nassau Coliseum. We can not and should not fund another economically frivolous development. The Islanders belong in the Nassau Coliseum and our community deserves redevelopment with substantial, high paying jobs. In a time of economic struggle, the last thing that the taxpayer needs is another dent in their pockets.
You may have interpreted that the Governor's announcement means that this stadium is a done deal, but I want to let you know that its not. This is YOUR community. This is the town in which we live, work and raise our children and I will make sure that all of your voices will be heard.
Michaelle C. Solages