Supervisor Newburger announced that the Town of North Hempstead has secured a $6.9 million short-term interest-free and long-term low-interest loan through the New York State Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) to finance the cost of capping and closing the Port Washington sanitary landfill (L-5).
These landfill-closure loans will be provided through the CWSRF, which is administered by the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC) and the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). The short-term zero-interest loan will enable the town to initiate closure design and construction work without incurring interest expenses. The long-term low-interest financing, also administered by the EFC and the DEC, will enable the town to complete the capping and closure of the L-5 landfill at substantially reduced interest costs to the taxpayers.
"The town will see an immediate savings of more than $500,000 in interest payments over the next three years due to the zero-interest financing from the state," said Newburger. "With interest rates potentially below 3 percent for the long-term loan, the town's interest payment savings will total more than $1.5 million." The state-subsidized financing of the capping and closure of the L-5 landfill will also put the town ahead of the debt-service projections included in its recently adopted Debt Management Plan. Adopted this past September, the Debt Management Plan will reduce the town's controllable debt by up to $104 million and its general fund debt service by up to 25 percent over the next 10 years.
"The town is very grateful to Governor Pataki for this important financial assistance, as well as to Assemblyman DiNapoli and Senator Balboni for their ongoing support for our environmental work in Port Washington," said Newburger. Last year, DiNapoli delivered $1 million in state assistance to the town to offset solid waste related capital expenses, and Balboni put together a $2 million grant for landfill closure expenses from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Environmental Protection Fund and from the 1996 Clean Water/Clean Air Bond Act.
The L-5 landfill is located on the Port Washington Peninsula directly south of Harbor Links Golf Course. The capping and closing of the L-5 landfill is the last of a series of major environmental projects undertaken by the Newburger administration since 1994. These projects include the capping and closure of the L-4 Superfund landfill, the construction of a state-of-the-art solid waste transfer station, the building of a groundwater treatment facility, the stabilization of the Morewood bluffs, the construction of the first phase of a Hempstead Harbor nature trail, and, of course, the development of the acclaimed Harbor Links golf and recreational complex.
The L-5 landfill closure project commenced in October of 2000 and fields 1 & 2, which account for 2/3 of the project, will be capped by the end of this year. All projects will be completed by July of 2003.