Coalition aims to stop Long Island Sound crossing projects before they start

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COLD SPRING HARBOR -

A new coalition wants to stop any plans Gov. Andrew Cuomo might have to build a tunnel or bridge across the Long Island Sound.

Environmental activist Heather Johnson spoke Wednesday for the first time as president of the Coalition Against an UnSound Crossing.

"We're here because we love Long Island, and as Long Islanders, we care about our water," she said.

Coalition member Peter Janow told News 12 that the group formed after realizing the governor was serious about a $55 billion Long Island Sound project.

"Why do you have to drive all the way around to go north? Those are extra hours. Those are extra tolls," Gov. Cuomo said last year during an address to the Long Island Association.

Since then the governor has touted a study submitted to the state that says the project is feasible.

"Let's put this in perspective,” said Janow. “The annual budget of Nassau County is only $3 billion. Suffolk County - $3 billion. We're looking at an almost 20-fold increase on one single project that will bring an environmental impact, that will bring eminent domain, will bring construction and take away the quality of life that we cherish on Long Island.”

Coalition members say that money would be better spent fixing the roads and other infrastructure that already exists. The group has the support of many elected officials and is made up of members of more than six community and civic organizations.

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