Long Island leaders look to Environmental Bond Act to fight climate change in their neighborhoods
New York voters overwhelmingly approved a $4.2 billion plan to protect the environment on Election Day
Waterfront villages on Long Island like Island Park are eager to get some of the investment in open space, clean water and the fight against climate change and flooding.
Island Park Mayor Michael McGinty says the funding is very important because his village is surrounded on three sides by water.
The ballot measure will provide $650 million for open space preservation, $650 million for clean water, $1.5 billion to fight climate change and $1.1 billion to prevent coastal flooding.
"The point of it is to protect property and lives of our residents," McGinty says "The Environmental Bond Act will go a long way to reaching our goal."
The village will be fitted with larger drainpipes and one-way flex valves to prevent coastal flooding in the streets.
State funds could also be used to reinforce wetlands, which is the first line of defense against flooding.
Northport is working on keeping its harbor and drinking water safe.
Grant funding could help expand the village's catch basins and sewer system. It could also replace old cesspools with new systems that clean wastewater.
"Very important for everybody, all of Long Island," says Northport Deputy Mayor Joseph Sabia. "Long Island is surrounded by water and if we keep polluting it, we're going to have a problem here."
Community activist in St. James Joseph Bollhofer hopes the funds can be used to help preserve the 48 acres of property to keep the Flowerfield Fairgrounds the way they are.
An environmentalist tells News 12 municipalities should start coming up with projects they want to see funded by the state
Decisions will come from the Department of Environmental Conservation from Gov. Kathy Hochul's office.
It is estimated that the bond will fund environmental projects for the next five to seven years.