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Long Island gets $109M for erosion projects

RoA charter boat makes its way through the

RoA charter boat makes its way through the Fire Island Inlet, shifting sands are making the channel more narrow for boats, seen looking south from Democrat Point in Robert Moses State Park. (Sept. 1, 2009) Photo Credit: Newsday/ Joel Cairo

Dredging, beach replenishment and other coastal erosion projects on Long Island will receive more than $109 million for work at six sites as part of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's NY Works program.

The projects on Long Island include $40 million for dredging Fire Island Inlet, $34 million to work on shore protection at Lake Montauk Harbor and $11.5 million for beach replenishment in Westhampton.

The governor's office Monday announced nearly $195 million statewide in funding for coastal erosion, dam repair and flood control measures. Long Island is getting the largest portion of funding.

The state is covering $22.65 million of the costs of the Long Island projects, while the Army Corps of Engineers is funding $86.65 million.

"Long Island's beaches, waterways and coastal areas are enjoyed by local residents and visitors from around the world," state Sen. Charles Fuschillo Jr. (R-Merrick) said in a news release. "They are a critical part of our economy and way of life, which must be protected. Investing in these projects will help prevent coastal erosion and ensure that residents and visitors can continue to enjoy these areas for years to come."

NY Works is an economic development program that funds infrastructure repairs while employing workers.

Half of the Long Island projects are for dredging.

"All boaters are always pleased to hear a channel is being dredged and maintained because that can be so hazardous," Fire Island National Seashore spokeswoman Paula Valentine said.

Two of the dredging projects -- at Fire Island Inlet and Moriches Inlet -- are on either end of Fire Island. The third is for Shinnecock Inlet.

"This is great news and critically important for the safety of our recreational boaters, commercial fisherman and our Coast Guard," state Sen. Owen H. Johnson (R-West Babylon) said about the dredging.

Funding also was approved for a feasibility study to evaluate how best to stabilize Route 48 in the Town of Southold.Cuomo's office also announced Monday that $20 million -- $4.7 million from the state and $15.3 million from the Army Corps of Engineers and New York City -- will be used to fund coastal erosion projects at Coney Island and Seagate Beach.


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