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April 6, 2009 - Senator Flanagan Letter to LIRPC

April 6, 2009 - Senator Flanagan Letter to LIRPC

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Senator John Flanagan (New York State) responds to the March 27 letter from Long Island Regional Planning Council.
Senator John Flanagan (New York State) responds to the March 27 letter from Long Island Regional Planning Council.

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Published by: Senator John Flanagan on Apr 08, 2009
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06/16/2009

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NEWYORI(
STA|E
SENATE
ALBAATY,NEW
YORK
12217
IOHN
I
FI-\NACAN
SENATOR,2NO DISTRICT
Ap.il
6,2009
Mr.
Michael
U[hite,Executive
DirectorLong
Island
Regonal
Planning
Council
100
Veterans
Mqnorial
Highway
Hauppauge,
New
York
I
1788
Dear
Mr.
White:
I
am
in receipt
of
yourletter
dated
March
27,2009,
whrch
was
forwardedto
my
attcntion
at
therequcst
of
our
office.
While
I
appreciatcthe courtesy
of
receivingthis conespondcnce,
Iam appalled
by
rts
content
andthe manner
in
wh-ich
it
came about.
Frankly,
I
am
suqprisod
that
thisletter
wasevcn
written
and
I
am
deeply
concemedaboutnumerousfactualrnisstatemeritscontained
therein, especiallyconsidering
rhit
thcy were
pennedunder
your
name.
I
say
that
specifically
in
reference
io
your
longlime
backgroundon
issues
conceming the
environment.Obvrously,you
arc
completely
unawarethat theentireNissequogue
River
State
park
rs
already
parklarrd.While
the365
acres
you
referencewas
formerly
known
as the
Kings
park
Psychiatrii
Center,that
parcel
is
now
errtirely
within
thc
jwisdictron
of
New
york
Stare
parks
as
parkland
and
rt
is
part
of
theNisscquogue
Rivcr
State
Park. I
am
keenly
aware
of this
fact
because
I personailyhelped
to
effectuatethat
hansferin
the
end
of
2006
workrng
directly
with
GovernorPataki
and
Commissioner
Casbo.
Incidenrally,
it
is
importantto
note thatthc
cnrrent
Administration
has
fullv
acknowledged
the
legality
ofrhis
transfer
into
the
New
York
State
parkssystem.
is
a
rcsult,
any
decisionto
use
thisparcel
rtt
a
mannerthat
rs
inconsistent
with
parkor recreational
purposes
(i'e-,mixod
use
dcvelopmcnt
with
workforce/next
gencrationhousrng),
as
you
and the
Council
havesuggested,
will
most
ccf,tainly
requireI\|YSOPRHP
to
alienate
or discontinue
thrs
parklandstarus.Duetothc
unprecedented
natueof
such
action,
numerous
legal
challengcs
would
undoubtedly
be
brought
by
environmentalorganizations
and
communityactivisisto uphold
the2006
parkland
designation.
rl
(J
 
(Page
2)
Michael White
April6,
2009
You
also
opine
as
to
thestatus
of
the
State
economy
and
the
New
York
State
Budgct.
While
I
share
your
andthe
Council's
concerns aboutthegeneral
state
ofNew
York's
economy,
I
couldnot disagret more
with
yourcharacterizations
and
assc,rtions
about
the
state
budgetand
inparticular
as
to the
$29
million
which
has
alrcadybeen
appropriatcd.Yourwritten
comments
are
offensive to
me
personally
and
they dcmonstratc
a
fundamentat
misunderstanding
of
the
budgcta4r
and
appropriation
process
in New
York.
Yow
commentsare
glib
and
urwarrantedwhenyou
refetr
to,"so called
available" firnding
and seerningly
mock
wherher
therc
iseven
a
commitmenttospsrd
the$29
million
on
rernediation.["So
thc
baselincquestionis whelhcr,glven
the
State's
fiscal
condition, the
Statehas and
theGovernoris
committing to
spcnd $29
million
forKings
Park'sremediation
activities."]
It
appcars
tome
from
the
tone
and
contcnt
of
yourletter
that
youactivelyhope
thatthere
.will
be
nofunding,
fhatthere
will
beno
parkland
and
thereshould
bc
an
expeditiousplan
to foist
deve16P.*t
upoq thc
Kings
Park
comrnunity.
Asto
the
specificappropriation
of
S29
milhon,
it
is
inreality
a
ccrmbination
of two
separate
appropriations,
one
for
$25
million
and
one
for
$4
million.
I
am
acutely
awarc
of
thcsefunds
and
their availability
bccause
I
ncgotiated
their
placement'in
the
New
York
State
Budget
-
the$25
million
in
2006
and
the
$4
million
in
2008.
You
should
know
that
these
fiurdshavebecn
appropriated
and
re-appropriated
with
thesupporr
of
then
Govemor
Spitzer
and
nowGovernor
Patcrson.
As
to
tho
firnding,you
appeer
to
sugg€st
that thescfunds
may
be
divcrted to
areas
of
thc
State
budget
like
SUlrfY
and the
MTA
to firnd
thcir
operatingneeds.
This
againdemonshates
a
comple{e
lbck
of
knowledge
that
lheNisscquogue
River
StatcPark
funding
iscapital
fi,rnding,
not operational
funding.
It
isfirnded,
accessedand
appropriated
diffcently
than
operational
expenditures.
Finally,
as
I
already
mcntioned
I
am
offended
by
yourletter
because
it
appears
that
thc
Council
acted
absent
anyinvolvcmentfrom
local
clccted
officials
or
the
Kings
Park
community.
Youspecifically
reference
yourwillingnessto
meet
withMr.
Lyons
and
Parks
rcpresentatives
yetyou
neverreached
out
tothepeople
most
directly
affected
by
thisongoing
issue
-
the
Kings
Park
communrty.As
their
statcsenator,
I
can
tell
you
thatthe residcnts
of Kings
Parkcare
deeply aboul
the
futue
of
thisproperty
and
allofLongIsland.
They
are
thoughtful,
they
are
canng
and
theyshouldnot
be taken
forgrantcd.
Hadyou
and
thc Council
rhoughtenough
and
carcdenoughto
rncludc
input
from:the
Kings
Park
community, you
would
know
that the
overwhelming
majority
of
residentssupport
maintaining
the
entircproperty
as
parkland
into
thefuturc
-
as
it
should
be
.
Inaddition,
myoffice
has
worked
countlesshours
on this
issue
for
over
five
years,
with
a
wide
array
ofindividuals
and
community
organizations.
Wherr
Ilook
at the
iompositionofyourCouncil,
espccially
theelected
officials
it
is
disapporntingto
me
as
an
electcd
official
that
therewasnoouheach
on
an
issue
ofthismagnitude
andimportance.

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