(Smithtown, NY-December 16, 2016) – Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone recently announced that the county legislature has authorized the construction of a storm water management project in the Town of Smithtown. The County will jointly work with the Town of Smithtown to facilitate the construction of a bioswale along Meadow Road. A bioswale is land that is re-engineered, filled with permeable materials and native plants that will naturally filter out storm water pollutants as water is released back into the aquifers and surface waters.
The bioswale is designed to reduce flooding along Meadows Road as well as the amount of nitrogen that is entering Phillips Mill Pond and the Nissequogue River – which both flow into Smithtown Bay. According to the 2015 Suffolk County Comprehensive Water Resources Management Plan, nitrogen is one of the leading culprits of the region’s declining water quality.
“This coordination with the town is another great example of innovation and collaboration that our region needs in order to protect our water from the excess amount of nitrogen loadings that our polluting our waters” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “I am pleased to work with Supervisor Vecchio and the Town of Smithtown to protect our water quality and restore our natural habitats.”
“We are grateful to Suffolk County for their assistance in preserving water quality,” said Smithtown Town Supervisor Patrick Vecchio.
The Town of Smithtown conducted an environmental review in accordance with the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA), and will be undertaking the improvement project to improve drainage along Meadow Road and capture runoff along the nearby watershed.
Suffolk County will provide $50,000 in funding under the Suffolk County Drinking Water Protection Program (DWPP). The Suffolk County Water Quality Review Committee deemed the project an as appropriate use of this funding. The Town of Smithtown will provide matching funds for the project, and will also receive additional funding from New York State.
The DWPP, which was reauthorized by Suffolk County voters in November 2014, provides funding for environmental protection, sewer district tax rate stabilization and property tax mitigation throughout the County.
The project is part of Suffolk County’s Reclaim Our Water initiative, which includes the securing of nearly $400 million in funding for the largest expansion of sewers in Suffolk County since the 1970s, and the release of the 2015 Suffolk County Comprehensive Water Resources Management Plan that provides critical recommendations on how to manage and protect the region’s water supply.
For more information on the latest water quality funding and the County’s Reclaim Our Water initiative, log on to www.suffolkcountyny.gov or www.facebook.com/stevebellone.