By LIBN Staff
January 4, 2024

This is an excerpt from the original article on Long Island Business News’ website.

Eric Alexander
Vision Long Island

The revelation that housing and zoning mandates are not coming back in 2024 should bring us more opportunities to plan changes in our communities locally with less interference from New York City or New York State interests.

Over 50 downtowns already have some sort of revitalization plan that envisions new redevelopment. 10,000 units of multifamily housing are going through the planning process now. Innovation in ADU’s; ownership units; and smaller, more affordable housing types can help provide options for young and old alike.

By the third quarter of this year we are hopeful that banks and other financial investors are comfortable lending to projects. Where interest rates land are making homeownership out of reach is unclear.

Communities have identified over 50 areas for pedestrian and bike safety improvements on our many dangerous roadways. How Department of Transportation and county DPWs deal with this crisis is well within their control.

Numerous sewer infrastructure, transportation and clean energy projects are underway as well.

The high cost of everything due to inflation will continue to impact middle class, working class and lower income folks. The trouble most Long Islanders have paying for the basics of food, gas and other basics is the major issue we hear on Main Streets.

Building the trust of Long Islanders particularly among NYS and federal officials will be a big issue this year. The revelation that we are sending over $40 billion more in taxes to these levels of government than we are getting back in projects and services is galling, but could begin the process of Long Island receiving its fair share of resources.

Sue Ruzenski


Helen Keller Services

Through strategic partnerships with companies such as Hilton Garden Inn, Joann’s and Amazon, we are harnessing the power of inclusion to bridge employment gaps for individuals who are blind, have low vision or DeafBlind. Our focus is on imparting valuable skills that foster independence so these individuals can actively contribute their unique abilities to society. In addition to these initiatives, our transformative art therapy program serves as a creative sanctuary, unlocking the boundless imaginations of participants. Our summer program experience of Camp Helen Keller is critical in helping campers create a social network with others who understand firsthand the daily challenges that arise from living with permanent vision loss. Gratitude is extended to all those who support HKS who champion and fund these programs.

Looking ahead to 2024, we are optimistic about achieving greater equity for individuals who are Blind, low vision or Deafblind with combined hearing or vision loss. It is our collective responsibility to define the path we wish to tread and ensure that our progress is both meaningful and impactful.

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Helen Keller Services

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