Smithtown Councilwoman Lynne Nowick (R) has been serving the public for more than 20 years, and she has no intention of slowing down.
The incumbent is looking for another term on the town board this fall, and said she wants to build on the successes of her two-decade long tenure.
“My heart is in it,” Nowick, a life-long St. James resident said in a phone interview. “I feel I am the best candidate because I have been working on this town for 22 years, and I will continue to work for this town.”
At the Smithtown Republican convention last month however, things did not go according to plan for the GOP town board incumbents, as chairman Bill Ellis led the way for three new challengers to get support from the party over Supervisor Pat Vecchio, Nowick and Councilman Tom McCarthy.
At the meeting Nowick said losing the nomination from the party would not deter her and she would “see them at the primary this September.” She said she preferred not to comment on the party division during the interview, saying she wanted to focus on her job.
She said her experience working in government for many years is a strong asset for her.
“I have a good rapport and relationships with county officials, as I worked with them for 17 years, and I feel that’s important to be able to work with them,” she said, referring to the years she served as a Suffolk County legislator for the 13th district.
During her tenure as a county official, Nowick said she was able to preserve properties and open space in Smithtown, including areas in Head of the Harbor, St. James and near the Nissequogue River. She said she was also able to secure funding for a sewer study project in Smithtown, and was instrumental in creating the first family concert series in Suffolk County, which was held in Smithtown.
“That was a shot in the arm for the community,” Nowick said. “It helped the town flourish by bringing families to the downtown area. That is downtown revitalization at its finest.”
Nowick added she was proud of the work she did focusing on keeping young kids safe and healthy.
She banned the sale of cough suppressants to young people, as well as the sale and possession of salvia, a psychoactive plant. She also worked to get a safety label put on energy drinks to warn consumers about the health risks, and created a drug take-back program in Smithtown.
“I was always trying to take care of the young people,” she said. “I believe parents aren’t always aware of the dangers.”
In terms of the success she’s had while serving as a town board member, the councilwoman said she’s proud of the town’s financial stability.
“We can brag about the fact that we have the gold standard on bond ratings with a AAA,” she said. “We’ve managed to maintain almost the lowest amount of debt per capita in Suffolk County, and our fund balances are strong and stable.”
She also highlighted the fact that Smithtown residents experienced a tax decrease this year, and there is expected to be no tax increase in 2018.
For the future, Nowick wants to continue to build on the sewer projects for the town, as well as improve infrastructure like the sidewalk project on Lake Avenue in St. James.
Vecchio praised Nowick’s efforts serving the town.
“She has been a diligent and dedicated councilwoman who has complete knowledge of all the issues that confront the town and she is an influential voice in meeting the issues,” he said in an email.