The Town of North Hempstead was fined by the state this month for clearing vegetation and filling in regulated freshwater wetlands in Port Washington in an effort to shore up an adjacent road.
The order by the state Department of Environmental Conservation, signed on July 10, requires that the town restore the wetlands, remove the fill and pay a $16,000 fine — $12,000 of which will be suspended if the town adheres to the state’s cleanup and restoration order.
The order stems from work the town did on property it owns off West Shore Road, near the town’s Harbor Links Golf Course. Town spokesman Collin Nash said the town had been trying to address persistent water issues that had been causing the adjacent road to erode.
Nash said that the town had not applied to the state before doing the work in the wetlands, which was thought to be the source of the water in the road.
“We went in to do the work without the benefit of the permit,” Nash said. “We’re paying the price for our oversight.”
Above: North Hempstead Town Hall