Hempstead and Shelter Island will get some help patrolling their waterways in the shape of new Brunswick "Justice" vessels, the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation said Tuesday.
The watercraft will be used to assist with marine law enforcement efforts on waterways throughout the state, the agency said in a news release through Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's office.
Including Hempstead and Shelter Island, four other agencies received the patrol vessels, valued at about $125,000 each. Also getting vessels are the upstate Columbia County Sheriff's Department, the New York State Police, the New York State Park Police and the Lake George Park Commission.
The boats are made possible through the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund administered by the U.S. Coast Guard, which provides funding to the states to assist with recreational boating safety, the release said.
The state said it has allocated $2.1 million this year to defray the costs of marine safety efforts for 53 law enforcement agencies across New York.
"These patrol boats help local organizations across the state maintain order on the waters in and around their communities," Cuomo said in the release.
Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray said the vessel will be "extremely helpful" in enforcing boating laws, monitoring of wetlands and conducting various missions in the event of future storms.
Boating has a $2.1 billion impact on the state's economy, according to the release. New York is the only state that borders marine tidewaters, the Great Lakes and large interior freshwater lakes, in addition to having an extensive canal system, according to the release.
The state is eighth in the nation for registered watercraft -- not including nonpowered boats such as kayaks and canoes, which make up a large proportion of the boats in upstate North Country.