USA: Governor Announces Investment for NY Works Projects
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced a $5,120,000 investment for NY Works projects that will allow for eight flood control system and dam repair projects in the North Country.
NY Works is designed to reinvent state economic development with innovative new strategy that will put New Yorkers back to work rebuilding the state’s infrastructure. The Task Force will help create tens of thousands of jobs by coordinating comprehensive capital plans, overseeing investment in infrastructure projects, and accelerating hundreds of critical projects across the state.
“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,” Governor Cuomo said. “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.”
State Senator Betty Little said, “North Country communities are still recovering from the severe flooding experienced last spring and late summer. Our rivers, streams and lakes are a draw for hundreds of thousands of tourists and sportsmen, but when flooding occurs, they can quickly become a threat to lives and property. Governor Andrew Cuomo’s New York Works program is putting resources into infrastructure badly needing attention and these upgrades will better safeguard our communities from future flood damage.”
State Senator Joe Griffo said, “The past two years, tens of thousands of people from parts of the North Country were affected by record-breaking floods, and while no one is suggesting that we can anticipate each and every natural disaster, the Administration and the Senate realized that we must enhance and update the preventative measures and management plans we have in place today.”
State Senator Patty Ritchie said, “Last year’s flooding in St. Lawrence County and southern Jefferson County reminded us all of the dangers we face from unexpected weather and other emergencies. NY Works is investing in projects that can help reduce the risk of future floods, while helping to create jobs and protect our communities.”
“After the events of last year, I am pleased to announce that some relief is on the way for communities in New York’s North Country,” said Speaker Sheldon Silver. “This new funding will support essential capital projects that will offer employment opportunities while rebuilding dams and reinforcing flood control systems.”
The Budget continues the Governor’s commitment to fiscal responsibility while creating jobs and strengthening communities across the state. It closes a multi-billion dollar deficit with no new taxes, fees or gimmicks, limits spending growth to two percent or below for the second year in a row, and launches the NY Works Task Force to invest billions of dollars to rebuild the state’s roads, bridges, parks, and other infrastructure and create tens of thousands of jobs.
The Budget includes key economic development and transportation initiatives, important reforms to improve government efficiency, and measures to strengthen communities across the state.
The state’s Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) maintains 106 flood control projects, of which 91 have been rated “minimally acceptable” or “unacceptable” by the Army Corps of Engineers. Additionally, DEC owns 577 dams statewide. Of the DEC-owned dams, DEC engineers classify at least 24 dams as “high” and “intermediate” hazard structures, where failure poses serious threat to human life or significant property damage. The New York Works Funds will designate $102 million, leveraging more than $100 million in matching funds, to repair aged and otherwise failing structures. The $102 million will include $18.5 million to repair state-owned dams, $56 million to perform maintenance of flood control facilities such as levees, and $27 million to implement coastal erosion and inlet navigation maintenance projects, plus over $100 million in matching funds.
Dredging Today Staff, April 17, 2012; Image: governor