New Opportunities to bring State Grants to Westchester 

Local officials, city managers, engineers, planners and environmental advocates are invited to attend a Green Infrastructure Grant Workshop offered by the NYS Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC) on May 3, at the Jay Heritage Center, from 11:30 am – 1:30 pm. The workshop is co-sponsored by Assemblyman Steve Otis (D-Rye) on behalf of the Westchester Assembly Delegation, along with the Jay Heritage Center, the Westchester Municipal Officers Association, Sustainable Westchester, Federated Conservationists of Westchester County and Save the Sound.  

Senior staff from the EFC will share information on two clean water green infrastructure programs offered to local governments.  The programs will assist local governments in utilizing unique stormwater infrastructure design and cutting-edge green technologies to improve water quality.

Assemblyman Otis stated, “The Governor and EFC have shown tremendous leadership in making clean water investment a top priority throughout the state.  An additional $500 million has been added towards water quality programs in the 2019-20 fiscal year state budget, the first installment of a new five-year, $2.5 billion program to address water quality issues proposed by the Governor.  It is my hope that many Westchester communities will take advantage of these innovative green infrastructure grant programs to improve water quality and tap into our natural systems.”

Suzanne Clary, President of the Jay Heritage Center added “The Jay Heritage Center is proud to host this event which not only underscores the importance of upgrading our water infrastructure but also introduces municipalities and people to the grant process in an accessible, practicable way. As a National Historic site overlooking Long Island Sound, adjacent to streams and a nature preserve, the Jay Estate is a perfect location for the discussion of manmade impacts on our natural resources and sustainable solutions. We are grateful to Assemblyman Steve Otis for bringing a public forum like this to our park.”

Otis helped develop the water grant program, which was initially funded for $200 million over a three-year period as part of the 2015-16 state budget.  In 2017, the state legislature along with Governor Cuomo approved a five-year $2.5 billion program that has already funded many projects throughout Westchester County. Otis has long sought ways to address municipal infrastructure costs and make these projects more affordable to local taxpayers.

“Green infrastructure is a proven, cost effective, nature-based approach to improving water quality and reducing flooding. Increasing the use of green infrastructure in Westchester communities will help keep pollution out of our rivers, streams and Long Island Sound, while also reducing the wear-and-tear on our storm water and sewage infrastructure,” said Tracy Brown, director of Save the Sound. “Save the Sound is grateful to Assemblyman Otis for continuing to lead on the issue of clean water in New York State and bringing new sources of funding, such as the Green Innovation Grant Program, to our communities. We look forward to seeing more green infrastructure installations in Westchester County.”

The workshop is free but registration is required.  To RSVP and for additional information about this workshop, please contact Assemblyman Steve Otis’ District Office at (914) 939-7028.

EFC’s Integrated Solutions Construction (ISC) Grants: For projects that incorporate green infrastructure into Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) projects to encourage and support green infrastructure alternatives and solutions. Successful applicants will construct projects that remove stormwater from combined, sanitary, or storm sewers. The proposed project should demonstrate the value of integrating green practices into traditional gray infrastructure projects to provide water quality benefits, as well as the advantages of natural systems. Awarded projects will receive 50% of the construction cost of eligible green stormwater practices. ISC grant funding is available only in conjunction with CWSRF financing.

Green Innovation Grant Program (GIGP): To improve and protect water quality and implement green stormwater infrastructure in New York. The Green Innovation Grant Program (GIGP) supports projects across New York State that utilize unique stormwater infrastructure design and create cutting-edge green technologies. GIGP provides grants on a competitive basis to projects that improve water quality and demonstrate green stormwater infrastructure in New York. The grant provides funding of a minimum of 40% up to a maximum of 90% of the total eligible project costs as provided in the application. A minimum of 10% up to 60% match from state or local sources is required.