Ned Sullivan, President, 914 489 4630
Andy Bicking, Director of Public Policy, 914 489 1568
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
HUDSON VALLEY—Scenic Hudson congratulates Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Legislature for making a strong investment through the state budget in protecting and enhancing the Hudson Valley’s environment and economy. State environmental programs are credited with generating a $7 return on investment for every dollar invested, representing jobs and economic impact at a time when the state is planning a recovery from the current public health crisis.
“At a time when it is not ‘business as usual,’ Scenic Hudson applauds Governor Cuomo, the Senate and the Assembly for coming together and keeping the state’s fiscal ship on time—and on target—by passing a budget that will help safeguard our communities’ green assets—open spaces, parks, drinking water and farming. This funding will keep the state on track for assuring that our children and grandchildren will benefit from a clean, healthy and safe environment,” said Scenic Hudson President Ned Sullivan.
“We’re especially pleased to see that the budget builds upon the governor’s and Legislature’s visionary leadership in confronting the challenges of climate change. It provides substantial funding that will enable communities to prepare for more frequent flooding and storm events by upgrading their water-quality and stormwater infrastructure and creating more flood-resistant waterfronts, create urban forests to keep cool during heat waves, and invest in strategies that can capture carbon – a major driver of climate change – on natural and working lands,” added Mr. Sullivan.
New Public Park in Mid-Hudson Valley Benefits from State Budget
Mr. Sullivan added that joint investments from the proposed Environmental Bond Act and the appropriation to the Environmental Protection Fund will provide funding to create a new public park on the Hudson River. The project will create an oasis of recreation and exploring nature at a former cement facility in Kingston. The 508-acre property, dubbed “Quarry Waters” by Scenic Hudson, is slated to be acquired by New York State office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and become a new state park. Details about the project are available at www.scenichudson.org/quarrywaters.
Environmental Bond Act
The Legislature approved a bill that defines the programs and appropriations to be included in the $3-billion Environmental Bond Act. The funding would provide a once-in-a-lifetime boost for protecting more lands that can provide recreation for residents and visitors and help confront key climate challenges.
“Uncertain times like these highlight the importance of protecting New York’s communities—providing clean drinking water and parks and outdoor spaces that will always be available for exercise and solace in urban and rural communities. By advancing the Environmental Bond Act, the Legislature shares Governor Cuomo’s commitment to investing in a healthier, more secure future for all New Yorkers. Scenic Hudson looks forward to working with the governor to promote public awareness of this funding’s potential to produce vast and truly transformative benefits,” said Mr. Sullivan.
Robust Environmental Protection Fund will benefit all local communities
The Legislature approved Gov. Cuomo’s proposal to sustain the Environmental Protection Fund at $300 million, the same amount included in last year’s state budget. The fund is the state’s premier investment tool for ensuring clean water, securing public health, confronting the impacts of climate change, conserving productive family farms, and protecting and connecting people to New York’s natural treasures.
“Scenic Hudson is grateful to Gov. Cuomo and the Legislature for sustaining the Environmental Protection Fund. The EPF plays a vital role in making the Hudson Valley a great place to live, work and play. By attracting public and private investment, it also creates jobs,” said Scenic Hudson Director of Public Policy Andy Bicking.