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Public hearing on stormwater runoff set for Monday

A public hearing on the final draft of

A public hearing on the final draft of the Great Cove Watershed Management Plan is set for Monday. Above, the sun rises in the reflection of Great South Bay at the end of Roe Avenue in Patchogue. (Jan. 17, 2011) Credit: James Carbone

A public hearing on the final draft of the Great Cove Watershed Management Plan — a proposal designed to reduce pollutants carried by stormwater runoff into the inlet — will be held Monday night at Islip Town Hall, hosted by the planning department and the Islip Town Environmental Council.

Over the last year, town staff examined the impact of stormwater runoff from several nearby hamlets on Great Cove, Planning Commissioner Dave Genaway said. The final management plan offers insight into the effects of stormwater runoff and suggestions on improving water quality in the inlet on the Great South Bay.

“There’s a certain measuring that we have to do to figure out where the primary sources of stormwater runoff pollution are occurring,” Genaway said. “When we learn where all those sources are, at some point in the future we’ll be expected to do something about it.”

He said watershed management plans such as Islip’s proposal are common and are usually mandated by state and federal government.

“We’re stewards of our bay, and we noticed it was extremely clear this year — all winter it’s been very clear — and one of the reasons is the lack of rain we’ve had and the lack of runoff into the bay,” Supervisor Tom Croci said after observing the difference in water quality during dry and wet months. “If you’re monitoring and protecting what’s going into the bay as far as runoff, you’re protecting the bay.”

The public hearing will take place at 7:30 p.m. at Islip Town Hall, 655 Main St. Genaway said that after the hearing the Islip Town Environmental Council will make a recommendation to the town board to adopt the plan.

Great Cove lies between Bay Shore and Islip hamlet, just east of Bay Shore marina.

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