Candidate Profile for Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin

The Island Now
Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin seeks re-election for a second term leading America's largest township.

Biography – About Supervisor Don Clavin

As supervisor of America’s largest township and throughout his career as a public servant, Don Clavin has always put taxpayers first. Putting taxpayers first was Don’s commitment from Day 1 in office, as he followed through on his campaign promises to slash the supervisor’s payroll in half, by nearly $1 million and eliminating take-home cars for top management.

As supervisor, Don Clavin takes the role as chief financial officer of the Town of Hempstead seriously, crafting a tax-freeze budget for 2021 and a tax-cut budget for 2022, working with colleagues on the Hempstead Town Board to approve the fiscally responsible, bipartisan spending plans that provide tax relief during a time that taxpayers need it the most.

What’s more, Clavin’s tax-cut budget for 2022 provides for the top-notch services and programs that residents deserve and major investments in roadway and parks upgrades through a comprehensive capital improvement plan.

In his first term as supervisor, Don Clavin has already earned the respect of Wall Street and the trust of neighbors on Main Street.

Indeed, under Don Clavin’s leadership as Supervisor, the Town of Hempstead received two credit rating upgrades in the span of 10 months, among the highest ratings available. Moody’s Investor’s Services boosted the Town of Hempstead’s credit rating from Aa2 to Aa1. In September 2021, Standard & Poor’s announced a credit rating upgrade for the Town of Hempstead from AA- to AA.

Moody’s lauded the town for “… strong fiscal management, sufficient reserves and liquidity and minimal debt and pension burden” with Supervisor Clavin at the helm. In addition, Standard & Poor’s commended the town’s “strong management” and “conservative budgeting,” along with a stable outlook.

As our nation was struck by a worldwide pandemic that took a toll on public health and the economy, 2020 transformed into a year like no other. Taking the unforeseen challenges head on, Don Clavin rolled up his sleeves and reported to work every day from the early days of the pandemic alongside the co-workers of the CSEA Local 880 workforce, who continued to provide residents with uninterrupted essential services.

Committed to supporting the safe and successful reopening of businesses and communities from the state-imposed pandemic shutdowns, Don Clavin instituted the region’s first outdoor dining initiative for restaurant owners and allocated millions in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES) funds to distribute thousands of personal protective equipment (PPE) kits to business owners to help protect customers and staff.

When the Town of Hempstead received millions of dollars in federal CARES funds, Supervisor Clavin’s focus was to utilize the recovery funds to provide direct assistance to the residents of America’s largest township.

Supervisor Clavin formed an Economic Relief Advisory Committee, a diverse group of leaders representing business, labor, education and the community to ensure that funding would be allocated to expedite the town’s economic recovery leading to the best possible outcome for residents.

Supervisor Clavin’s efforts, with bipartisan support from the Hempstead Town Board, to allocate CARES funds to community needs include a comprehensive initiative to address food insecurity through the establishment of pop-up food banks and a home meal delivery service with organizations such as Long Island Cares and Island Harvest.

The efforts of Supervisor Clavin and the Town Board have resulted in millions of meals distributed to residents during the pandemic. What’s more, Don Clavin collaborated with leading medical providers, including Northwell Health and Mount Sinai South Nassau, to help provide no-cost COVID-19 testing to tens of thousands of residents, including PCR diagnostic, rapid and antibody options during the pandemic.

In addition, Clavin implemented a free COVID-19 testing program for first responders and essential workers to assist these front-line men and women during the heights of the pandemic. Clavin’s federal CARES initiatives also includes millions of dollars in financial aid to front-line entities, including hospitals, villages, fire departments, schools, colleges and universities and other community organizations to assist with pandemic response.

In March of 2021, Supervisor Clavin and the Hempstead Town Board partnered with Mount Sinai South Nassau to unveil the first mobile vaccination unit in New York State (second in the nation).

Since then, the Town of Hempstead has provided over 7,000 free COVID-19 vaccines to residents, bringing the service to communities across America’s largest township. In addition, Clavin boosted the Town’s efforts by spearheading the establishment of a homebound vaccination program administered by the town’s in-house EMS squad.

Prior to his term as Hempstead Town Supervisor, Don Clavin served 18 years as Receiver of Taxes for America’s largest township. During that time, Don Clavin embraced innovation and brought that legacy to the Supervisor’s office.

As receiver, Clavin was the first in New York State to implement the first paperless e-Billing system in New York State, as well as Long Island’s first Autopay tax payment feature and drive-thru payment options.

As supervisor, Don Clavin followed through on a commitment to modernize the Building Department, working with his colleagues on the Town Board to bring the department online for the first time and streamline services by eliminating multiple trips to Town Hall and processing applications electronically.

Supervisor Clavin regularly works with department heads to coordinate similar efforts to modernize and improve services within America’s largest township.

Earning his Bachelor of Arts from Canisius College in Buffalo, Don received his Doctorate of Jurisprudence from Hofstra University School of Law right here in Hempstead Town. He gained experience working as a trial attorney that practiced in all New York courts as well as United States Federal District Courts.

Don Clavin earned valuable experience in local government while working in the Office of the Nassau County Attorney as Deputy County Attorney.

There, he was responsible for defending various agencies of government ranging from the Department of General Services to the Nassau County Police Department. After leaving the County Attorney’s office, Clavin entered the private sector and went on to represent various corporations including Home Depot and General Motors.

Don Clavin is a lifelong resident of the Town of Hempstead, where he and his wife, Nancy, are proud to be raising their two daughters and son. Don’s mother was the first woman to ever serve as Valley Stream Village Trustee, and his father served as District Court Judge. Clavin is a member of the Kiwanis Club of Garden City, Irish Americans in Government, the New York State Trial Lawyers Association, the Nassau County Bar Association and the Knights of Columbus. Clavin also served as a volunteer on the Valley Stream Mayor’s Blue Ribbon Committee in the Village of Valley Stream.


Top Three Issues

1. Tax Relief: I’m running for re-election to continue my good government agenda and demonstrating the highest regard for taxpayers.

On my first day in office, I followed through on my promise to slash the supervisor’s staff budget in half, saving taxpayers $1 million annually. Working with a bipartisan town board, I froze taxes in 2021 and delivered a tax cut budget for 2022.

Tax relief remains at the top of my priorities, especially during a time that taxpayers need it the most. I froze town taxes for 2021 and I have proposed a tax cut for 2022.

In addition, I slashed the Supervisor’s staff spending by half, saving taxpayers $1 million annually and eliminated take-home town cars for top management.

A testament to strong budgeting and smart fiscal management under my leadership, the Town of Hempstead has received two credit rating increases in the span of 10 months from respected Wall Street credit agencies Moody’s and Standard & Poors. I look forward to furthering our successes by continuing to work collaboratively with a bipartisan Town Board, providing tax relief for residents while providing top-notch services, instituting major improvements to infrastructure and facilities, crafting innovative programs and initiatives and furthering our efforts to modernize town government.

In addition, as COVID-19 continues to impact residents, I strive to keep the Town of Hempstead as a leader amongst townships in implementing programs to help neighbors and business owners during the ongoing pandemic.

2. COVID-19 Pandemic Response: Leading America’s largest township during a pandemic, I’ve worked alongside my colleagues on the Town Board to utilize millions in federal funds to provide direct community aid.

During the pandemic, we have served over a million meals for residents in need through pop-up food banks and home food delivery services; delivered thousands of PPE kits for businesses; established New York’s first mobile vaccination unit (the “Vaxmobile), resulting in over 7,000 vaccines administered to date for town residents; provided thousands of free COVID tests for the public, as well as testing programs for essential workers and first responders; air filtration units for senior citizens; allocation of grants to hospitals, schools, fire departments, colleges and universities, villages, libraries and other front-line entities and partnered with the United Way of Long Island to provide free air filtration units to vulnerable senior citizens.

Thanks to the dedication of our hard-working CSEA Local 880 workforce, all Town services have remained open during the pandemic. We even expanded our offerings to provide safer and convenient options for residents, including new online building department services, expanded drive-thru tax payment booths and outdoor service kiosks at Town Hall.

We even created provisions for outdoor dining to help restaurants cope with the impact of the COVID pandemic. We will continue to work to help residents and business owners through this ongoing pandemic.

3. Modernizing Town Government and Enhancing Quality of Life: Enhancing quality of life for residents is key, as we established “Operation Clean Sweep” to keep our business districts and downtowns pristine. We’re also supporting downtown revitalization projects with brick-paved walkways and Victorian lighting. The creation of a “pothole patrol” hotline deploys crews to repair roadways.

In addition, our significant investment of $75 million in road improvements is critical to the future of the 1,200 miles of roadways within America’s largest township. What’s more, we have made a commitment to upgrading town parks, with over $10 million committed to several playground and field upgrades set for parks across the township.

During my previous role as receiver of taxes, I embraced innovation and technology as we were the first municipal tax office in New York state to issue e-Bills, and the first in the region to establish an autopay feature and a drive-thru tax payment service. I brought that legacy of innovation to the Supervisor’s office as I worked to modernized town government, specifically in the Building Department.

During the height of the pandemic, we brought Building Department Services online for the first time, which streamlined and vastly improved the application process, making the department modernized and more efficient. In addition, we were the first in New York State to unveil a mobile vaccination vehicle, in partnership with Mount Sinai South Nassau, providing over 7,000 COVID-19 vaccines to residents. Modernizing town government is an ongoing commitment as I work with various departments on ways to improve services for our residents and I look forward to furthering our progress.

Finally, safeguarding our environment is top priority, as I announced the Town of Hempstead’s Vision 2040, a plan to transform America’s largest township to a fully electric fleet within the next two decades.

We’ve taken the first steps by piloting one of the nation’s only electric garbage vehicles, and with the purchase of two fully electric vehicles being utilized by the Department of Conservation and Waterways. In addition, the Town of Hempstead received the first-ever “Share the Shore” Award presented by Audubon, for our ongoing efforts to protect endangered bird species along our miles of beaches and across our vast township.

Why I am seeking Re-Election

I’m running for re-election to continue my good government agenda, demonstrate the highest regard for taxpayers and work hard to deliver tax relief while enhancing facilities and services for residents. Putting taxpayers first, enhancing quality of life, protecting our environment and investing in our facilities, roadways and communities are just some of the many important platforms of my campaign.

As a husband and dedicated father of three children, I am fully committed to the advancement of America’s largest township for the betterment of future generations. I look forward to working together with a bipartisan Town Board to implement more life-enhancing programs and continue the progress we have made in my two years as Supervisor of America’s largest township.


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