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Source: Massapequa Patch

Speak For Massapequa Creek

Public Comment Welcome On Massapequa Creek Restoration Plan


Posted: June 30, 2010
Originally Published: June 24, 2010

The Town of Oyster Bay has revealed its plans for the future of Massapequa Creek.

The Massapequa Creek Watershed Management and Corridor Restoration Plan was presented at a public hearing Tuesday, and the town board announced the beginning of a 30-day comment period for residents to offer feedback. The comment period will conclude July 21, at which point the town will vote on the plan.

Members of the board heard from Cashin Associates of Hauppauge, an engineering, planning, construction and management company which was responsible for preparing the plan that's designed to protect Massapequa Creek and its surrounding corridor within the Massapequa Preserve.

Gregory Greene, director of environmental programs for Cashin said the ideas they've laid out will play an integral role in preserving the biological integrity of the area as well as protecting natural and open space.

Citizens Campaign For The Environment executive programs manager Maureen Dolan Murphy, who was involved in the plan's early preparation stages, said she's pleased with what she sees.

"We think that that this is a responsible plan that lays out what needs to be done within a reasonable timeframe in terms of its implementation," she said. "We hope that the town embraces this plan and decides to carry it out."

While the plan was prepared to help restore and preserve the creek, many in attendance said that taking care of the area will also involve reaching out to future generations.

"Education is important," Greene said. "The more children are able to learn about these issues now, the better off we'll be in the future, especially when it comes to implementing the plan."

Dolan Murphy shared Greene's sentiments, "It's so critical that we start educating future generations on how their actions can impact our future environment."

She also expressed hope that people take advantage of the 30-day comment period. "We encourage the public to let the town know that they should adopt the plan and pursue implementation immediately," she said. "Public feedback is critical in any process because it allows us to let our town know what issues are important to us. As residents weigh in on this issue, it shows the Town of Oyster Bay that the health of Massapequa Creek is a priority for us."

The plan is funded by an $88,000 grant that the town received from the state's Local Waterfront Revitalization Program.

It is a key component of a larger state effort called the Long Island South Shore Estuary Reserve Comprehensive Management Plan. That plan was adopted in April 2001 to combat the threat of over-development, pollution related to the area's growth, potentially poor land use and resource management.

The Massapequa Creek Watershed Management and Corridor Restoration Plan can be viewed on the South Shore Estuary website. Copies and a CD of the plan are also available at the Massapequa Bar Harbour and Farmingdale Public Libraries.

People can submit their comments on the plan in writing through the Town's website, or by mailing them to the Town Clerk's Office at Town of Oyster Bay, 54 Audrey Avenue, Oyster Bay.

Prior to the hearing, the town celebrated two teams from the Massapequa Boys Lacrosse Club for winning this year's 5th Annual Supervisor's Cup Lacrosse Tournament benefiting juvenile diabetes, leukemia and lymphoma charities. They also recognized this year's Bette James Memorial Scholarship Award recipients, which included Massapequa area graduating seniors Ashley Domingo, Corinne Healey and Richard Laino as well as North Massapequa's Jacklyn McKnight.