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Source: Long Island Press

Funding Increased for the Long Island Sound


Posted: November 2, 2009
Originally Published: October 31, 2009

The US Interior Appropriations Conference Committee has agreed to increase federal funding for the Long Island Sound to $7 million, the highest level of federal funding in the history of the waterbody.

“We are thrilled; this is a victory for all of New York & Connecticut,” said Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director, Citizens Campaign for the Environment. ‘The Great Waters provide valuable jobs, recreation, and are part of our culture.”

Funding for LIS 2006, 2007 and 2008 was $2.2 million, $2.7 million, $5.5 million respectively. While these amounts have allowed efforts and work to progress, they represent a sizable disparity from the $65 million yearly authorized under federal legislation.

The EPA estimates that the Sound generates $8 billion to the local economies. At the same time, storm-water runoff and treated sewage seep into the Sound each day, threatening the health of the Sound and the industries that rely upon it for recreation. Without upgrades to sewage treatment plants and plans to control pollution, the sound is faced with the potential of serious damage.

“Seven million dollars is a wise investment that promises a huge return for the restoration of habitat, marine life, and the return of the dolphins,” stated Maureen Dolan Murphy, Executive Programs Manager, CCE.

The House and Senate are expected to vote on final bill by the end of the week.

“There is simply too much at stake to sit back and let the Long Island Sound Study funding fade away,” said Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY). “And while there is much to be done, this additional funding will be a huge step in protecting this majestic part of our state and ensuring its heath into the future.”