The Town of Brookhaven has been crossing environmental projects off their list one grant at a time. Supervisor
Ed Romaine spoke to this publication to highlight some of the recent measures taken to preserve the local land and waters.
1. The New York Audubon Society in partnership with the town has been working to remove sections of the unpaved South Rivera Drive in Mastic Beach and replace them with natural vegetation. The measure, Romaine said, not only protects the land but also will help detract unwelcome activity on the dirt road.
2. The U.S. National Fish and Wildlife Service gave the town a grant to preserve 147 acres of salt marsh habitat in southern Mastic Beach to help reduce flooding.
3. Pew Charitable Trust Nature Conservancy’s SOAR program has allowed the town to purchase large oysters to be planted in Brookhaven sanctuaries. Romaine explained that when the market and restaurants shutdown, the town used the funding to purchase the grown oysters for planting in the Bellport and Moriches Bays.
4. Two not-for-profits the Moriches Bay Project and the Friends of the Bellport Bay also helped plant over 35,000 oysters each year.
5. A New York State shellfish expansion grant was received three years ago contributing 50,000 15-20-millimeter hard clam seeds for Bellport Bay each year for five years.
6. A U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services grant was received to help turn restore nesting habitats on Carter’s Island in Moriches Bay.
7. Two New York State grants were received to help install alternative denitrification systems at both Corey and Shirley beaches for their bathroom facilities. Each system, Romaine said, costs approximately $100,000 and the grant helped to keep costs down.
8. Another state grant was received to install the Swan River Fish passage in East Patchogue to help move native species.
“We are very active in using other money to get things done. They know our reputation and know we are committed to the environment,” Romaine added. “I am always looking to improve the environment and reset the clock so that my grandchild can enjoy the island I grew up on.”