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Goals floated for community reconstruction in Amityville

A view of downtown Amityville. (June 5, 2011)

A view of downtown Amityville. (June 5, 2011) Photo Credit: Alexi Knock

Better flood protection, a revised emergency preparedness plan and purchase of storm recovery equipment were among the possible goals floated Monday at a community reconstruction program meeting in Amityville with residents, consultants and state officials.

Roughly $14 million of more than $850 million destined for public infrastructure and building improvement projects across storm-affected areas under the NY Rising program will come to Amityville, Amity Harbor, Copiague Harbor and American Venice, said Barbara Brancaccio, a spokeswoman for New York State Homes and Community Renewal.

Long Island will receive $240 million, said Brancaccio, whose agency administers the funds. But it will be spring before any shovels hit the ground, officials said.

A local committee composed of business and civic leaders and building trades members has until Oct. 31 to identify the best projects to build up the area's storm-readiness. Professional planners will work with the committee to refine the ideas before submitting them to the state on March 31.

"Any plans that would come out of this program have to reflect more than building back what there was," said Everett Budd, a retired Amityville engineer who is co-chair of the committee, in a phone interview.

"We are looking for a vision of what we could be." He ran through a list of possibilities for residents at the Bay Village Civic Association meeting, also held Monday night: road raising, more generators for public buildings, high-water signs and equipment such as water rescue vehicles.

Residents can offer their ideas at two open houses this fall. One will be Sept. 26 from 6 to 9 p.m. in Copiague, but its location was not finalized Tuesday night. The second is to yet to be scheduled.

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