The Shinnecock Inlet — which first connected Shinnecock Bay and the Atlantic Ocean when the Great Hurricane of 1938 cut through Dune Road — is slated to be dredged at a cost of $11.3 million, thanks to state funding as part of the governor's initiative to stimulate employment and accelerate projects across New York State.
, I-Sag Harbor, said on Monday that a total of $66.8 million from the New York Works project fund is being allocated to the South Fork to address coastal erosion. Thiele said a total of $109.3 million was allocated for six coastal erosion-control projects on Long Island. The state will invest $22.65 million and leverage the remaining $86.65 million from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
27east.com reported that the inlet was last dredged in early 2010.
Other projects included in Gov. Andrew Cuomo's 2012 budget are an $11.5 million project for beach re-nourishment in Westhampton and a $34 million project to control erosion at Lake Montauk.
According to the governor's office, NY Works was meant to "reinvent economic development with innovative new strategy that will put New Yorkers back to work rebuilding the state's infrastructure." A task force was set up to create "tens of thousands" of jobs and accelerate critical projects.
Thiele said that in his district the state will be investing $14.4 million, with $52.4 million coming from the Army Corps, which has been studying many of these areas for years.
The projects ensure navigational access, while protecting homes and businesses, he said. "Our economy and livelihood depends on it."
"This investment helps ensure the safety of our communities, stands to create jobs, and will protect our cherished shorelines," Thiele said in a statement.
"For the second year in a row, New York State has passed a transformative and balanced budget that holds the line on spending, while focusing on job creation and government efficiency," Cuomo said in that statement. "The centerpiece of this budget is the New York Works program, which will help rebuild our aging infrastructure, including our dams and flood control systems, to protect people and property throughout our state."