DEC announces grant of $130,000 to improve water quality, bolster flood resiliency

DEC announces grant of $130,000  to improve water quality, bolster flood resiliency

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced a grant of $130,000 to help communities in the Hudson River Estuary watershed improve water quality, increase flood resiliency, and conserve natural resources.

Commissioner Basil Seggos disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday April 12, 2022,

According to Seggos, the grants will help municipalities document constrictions that cause flooding at culverts and bridges and are barriers to fish movement in Hudson tributary streams. 

"The grants are supported by the State's Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) and administered by DEC’s Hudson River Estuary Program in partnership with New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (NEIWPCC)," Seggos said.

He added, “Through DEC’s ongoing partnership with NEIWPCC, we are advancing projects that will help Hudson River estuary watershed communities develop plans to improve infrastructure where roads cross streams to reduce flooding, restore stream habitat, and improve water quality."

“Supported by the State’s recently increased Environmental Protection Fund, New York is making record investments in these and other efforts that boost resiliency and protect New York's water quality and natural resources.”

Susan Sullivan, NEIWPCC Executive Director said, “In a year when NEIWPCC is celebrating the 50 years of the Clean Water Act and NEIWPCC’s 75th anniversary, we are pleased to partner with DEC to help communities improve water quality in tributary streams to the Hudson River Estuary. A healthy estuary requires a healthy watershed.”

In the 2022-23 Enacted State Budget, Governor Hochul succeeded in increasing the EPF from $300 to $400 million, the highest-ever level of funding in the program's history. 

The EPF supports climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts, improves agricultural resources to promote sustainable agriculture, protects our water sources, advances conservation efforts, and provides recreational opportunities for New Yorkers.

The $130,000 in grant funding announced today will support the development of regional municipal management plans and designs to improve inadequate road-stream crossings focused on priority sites for flood mitigation and/or stream habitat for fish in multiple municipalities.

In 2021, DEC in partnership with NEIWPCC awarded nearly $100,000 to T&B Engineering to develop municipal management plans for road-stream crossings and dams in the towns of Red Hook and Milan, Dutchess County. 

The plans include all crossings in both towns, building on the 148 previously inventoried culverts, including the road-stream crossings located within the portions of the watersheds of nine tributary creeks.

The deadline for proposals is June 10, 2022, at 12 p.m.