Senator Lee Zeldin Restores State Grant Process for The Patchogue Village Sewer Project

Lee M. Zeldin

May 12, 2011

Patchogue, NY-  State Senator Lee M. Zeldin (R, C, I- Shirley) announced today that he has succeeded  in reviving the state grant process for the Village of Patchogue sewage pump station.  The Village of Patchogue had been in the process of receiving two $500,000 grants for the sewer project, until the former State Senate Democratic Majority directed the New York State Dormitory Authority to cancel the application 11 days before Senator Zeldin took office.

“It has been a very long process, but I am glad today that I can announce that I have been able to get the funding for the Village of Patchogue back online,” said Senator Zeldin.

After taking office on January 1st, 2011, Senator Zeldin discovered almost $9 million in cancelled grants and non-approved projects for the 3rd Senate district.  The defunding of $4.6 million in projects, including the Patchogue Sewer Project, were initiated by the Senate Democrats following the November 2010 election.  No explanation or supporting documentation for any of these projects was provided to Senator Zeldin by his predecessor or officials from the former Democratic Majority for five months, despite constant requests.

 “As soon as I took office, I immediately began working to investigate and put together details of the de-funding of projects in my district.   As more of the details were uncovered, it became clear that local governments and non-profits had acted in good faith on the false assurances they received and were then left with huge unfunded liabilities.  Even though these wrongful actions took place before I took office, I was determined to clean up this mess and try to restore these projects.  I have had countless meetings and phone calls with our local elected officials from Patchogue; including Assemblyman Dean Murray, Supervisor Mark Lesko, Councilman Tim Mazzei, and Mayor Paul Pontieri. I especially want to thank Assemblyman Murray for his assistance in Albany, ” continued Senator Zeldin.

“This project is critical to the continued economic development of the Greater Patchogue area.  When it looked like funding for this had been removed for purely political reasons, Senator Zeldin stepped up to secure the money needed,” said Assemblyman Dean Murray.  “This project is about creating jobs and bringing business to the Main Street/Montauk Highway corridor.  Senator Zeldin and I worked side by side to ensure that this was not brought to a grinding halt.”

“As the Mayor of the Village of Patchogue I would like to thank Senator Zeldin for the hard work it took to restore the $1,000,000 in funding for the E. Main St. pump station. This pump station is an essential piece in connecting the Villages waste water treatment plant to E. Patchogue, thereby, allowing for growth and the economic revitalization of the Community,” said Patchogue Mayor Paul Pontieri.

“Thanks to efforts of Senator Zeldin, we can now move forward with the revitalization of the East Main Street Corridor,” said Councilman Tim Mazzei. “When this project is complete, I expect that we'll really start to see vast improvements to this area that will have a very positive impact on the local economy”

“Completion of the East Patchogue sewer system is the key to our revitalization program for the East Main Street Corridor and an important step in attracting new businesses to the area," said Supervisor Mark Lesko. "I thank Senator Zeldin for his efforts to secure the much needed funding that will allow this work to continue.”

“It is my hope that by working together at all levels of government we can help make our community a better place to live and raise a family.  This is a project that will help grow our community and create jobs.  I am proud that we have begun fixing some irresponsible decisions made in late 2010,” concluded Senator Zeldin.