FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 31, 2005
MAYOR BLOOMBERG SIGNS LEGISLATION TO STUDY TRANSFER OF CITY WETLANDS TO PARKS DEPARTMENT
Remarks by Mayor Bloomberg at a Public Hearing on Local Laws
"The bill before me today is Introductory Number 566-A, sponsored by Council Members Gennaro, Addabbo, Avella, Comrie, Fidler, Gerson, Gonzalez, Jennings, Koppell, Lopez, Martinez, McMahon, Palma, Quinn, Recchia, Sanders, Weprin, Reyna, Monserrate, Lanza, Vallone, Brewer, Yassky, Gentile, Liu, Jackson, Gallagher, DeBlasio, Arroyo and Public Advocate, Betsy Gotbaum. This bill establishes a temporary task force to study the feasibility of transferring certain City-owned wetlands to the Department of Parks and Recreation.
"This Administration is committed to preserving and expanding our City's 14 miles of wetlands. The Parks Department has a long history of working with the Departments of Environmental Protection, Sanitation, and Citywide Administrative Services, as well as the New York City Economic Development Corporation, to protect these fragile ecological resources.
"Introductory 566-A calls for a temporary task force to study the technical, legal, environmental and economical feasibility of transferring City-owned wetland areas to the Department of Parks and Recreation, and to report their recommendations and conclusions to the Mayor and the City Council. The seven-member task force will be appointed for nine months.
"Balancing the need to preserve and protect open space with the need to create additional housing, transportation and economic development opportunities is challenging. Fortunately, we are up to this challenge and will continue to work with our partners in government and the private sector to ensure New York City's limited resources are used as efficiently as possible.
"I would like to thank the City Council, Department of Parks and Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe and Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Emily Lloyd for their leadership on this issue."
Edward Skyler / Jordan Barowitz (212) 788-2958