Nassau County Legislator Kevan Abrahams (D-Hempstead) joined fellow Majority Legislators, environmentalists and community activists to applaud voters’ overwhelming approval of the County’s $100 Million Open Space referendum, which received support this past Election Day by 77 percent of the voters. Legislators will discuss what will happen now, how projects will be selected and how the $100 million may be spent.
“Approval of this environmental bond goes a long way towards helping us preserve our limited natural resources that are so vital to our quality of life here in Nassau,” said Abrahams.
“The voters of Nassau County have once again responded loudly to the need to preserve the few open spaces left in our communities and to protect our drinking water,” Presiding Officer Judy Jacobs (D-Woodbury) said.
"We are very grateful to the elected officials who placed this important measure on the November ballot and the voters who approved it,” said Lisa Ott, executive director of the North Shore land Alliance. “Together we have ensured a healthier future for today’s Nassau County residents as well as those who follow us.”
“The approval by the voters of the Environmental Bond Act will create an environmental legacy for future generations of preserved open spaces, protecting drinking water sources, and improved recreational opportunities," said Neal Lewis, executive director of the Neighborhood Network.
The first open space bond preserved 72.3 acres of land and development rights were purchased on 43 acres. The first bond also addressed park improvement, clean water, and brownfields projects.
The recently-approved $100M bond will be paid off through a dedicated tax, estimated to cost the average tax payer about $16 a year for 20 years. Projects will be selected by an advisory committee, which will make recommendations to the legislature. According to Tom Maher, Director of Environmental Coordination for Nassau County, there are a number of properties that the advisory committee recommended that could not be acquired and will be considered under the new bond act, including the Armstrong Dairy, Held property and the Banfi Estate.