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Town Board Holds Finance Hearing Regarding Jericho Field

At the June 9 Town of Oyster Bay meeting, a finance hearing was held to discuss the acquisition of land for a park in Jericho.

At the hearing, the town board agreed to purchase an approximately three-acre parcel of land to create a park encompassing a multi-purpose playing field with bleachers, playground, concession and bathrooms for the Jericho Park District.

“While the land is situated in Syosset, it abuts the Jericho community and is easily accessible to Jericho residents,” said Town of Oyster Bay Councilman Chris Coschignano.

The parcel is located on the southwest side of Robbins Lane and has a street address of 300 Robbins Lane. The total acquisition cost for the property is $10.5 million with $5 million coming from the Save Environmental Assets (SEA) Fund and the remaining $5.5 million being paid through the issuance of bonds, which will be paid off by the residents of the Jericho Park District.

The Jericho Park District, a special taxing district within the Town of Oyster Bay, was created in 1957 by the Town of Oyster Bay board after several requests were made for the new park district. According to the resolution from a town meeting dated April 4, 1957, the park district was formed for the “purpose of providing park facilities for the residents of the district.”

Improvements have been budgeted at $4 million and that funding will also come from the SEA Fund, a $30 million environmental bond proposition that was on the ballot in 2000 and was overwhelmingly approved by voters.

“Only the residents in the park district pay for the park and the funding, much like Syosset-Woodbury Community Park, which is also in a Park District,” said Coschignano. “However, our large town parks like John J. Burns Park in Massapequa, for example, are paid for townwide.”

Local community members having been working diligently with the town board on this project and attended Tuesday’s meeting to show their support and appreciation. “Thank you on behalf of all of the kids in the Jericho community,” said Bill Ferro, a member of the Jericho Athletic Association field committee and newly elected Jericho School board member. “The town board made promises and never wavered. Thank you for your support.”

Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto said that he applauds the residents of Jericho for caring so much about their community and said they have been “great partners” in this endeavor.

The next step is for the Nassau County Planning Commission to review the plans and the town said they will stay in touch with the Jericho Athletic Association field committee to keep this project on pace.