Smithtown gets state grant funds

Smithtown gets state grant funds

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Government efficiency program yields results with six-figure grants

Smithtown Town Hall. File photo by Rachel Shapiro

The Town of Smithtown has been awarded two efficiency grants, courtesy of the state, Supervisor Pat Vecchio (R) said in a statement.

New York State has awarded Smithtown a total of $902,363 to help the town continue its regional fuel facility consolidation project and another $288,750 to help its regional storm water management initiatives, Vecchio said. The grants came as part of the state’s local government efficiency program, which encourages projects that will achieve savings and improve municipal efficiency through shared services and consolidations.

The regional fuel facility consolidation project was created to expand and update fueling stations in order to consolidate fueling operations among municipalities within the township, Vecchio said. In addition to cost savings, the project should improve the town’s fueling needs in the event of large-scale disasters like a hurricane, the supervisor said.

Smithtown’s fueling station is located at the town’s highway department. The new facility, Vecchio said, will have a larger capacity for fuel reserves, use backup generators and have a computerized monitoring system to protect the environment and control fuel inventory. Smithtown municipal partners, including the Village of Nissequogue, the Village of the Branch and the Village of Head of the Harbor should be using this upgraded facility along with Smithtown, St. James, Kings Park, Nesconset, Hauppauge and the Commack fire districts.

In August, Vecchio was authorized to submit a grant application for funding the Regional Stormwater Management Initiative through the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation water improvement program. He said funding from that grant allows the town to implement its stormwater management program in partnership with the villages of Nissequogue, Head of the Harbor and Village of the Branch.

“These two grants move us in the right direction,” Vecchio said in a statement. “It is projects like these that give the town, the villages and the fire districts an opportunity to modernize facilities, share and improve services while reducing the tax burden.”

The project included the maintenance of storm water catch basins throughout the town and the villages and the purchase of a vacuum truck that will be shared by all four municipalities. Proper maintenance of the basins should reduce the amount of contaminated sediment entering the ground waters, Stony Brook Harbor and Millers Pond, Vecchio said.