ASSEMBLY STANDING COMMITTEE ON ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION
NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING
Plum Island, a federally-owned 840 acre island located off the coast of Long Island, is the current home of the federal Department of Homeland Security Plum Island Animal Disease Center as well as an 1869 lighthouse, and buildings constructed as part of Fort Terry, a military fort used during the Spanish-American War and both World War I and World War II. In addition, the Island is host to numerous bird species and other wildlife. In a 2010 letter regarding the preparation of a draft Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the United States Fish and Wildlife Service indicated "Plum Island is widely recognized as containing significant habitats for fish, wildlife, and plant species by Federal, State, and local agencies, as well as non-governmental agencies." The State has also recognized the importance of Plum Island, listing it as a regional priority conservation project on the 2014 Draft New York State Open Space Conservation Plan.
The federal Consolidated Security, Disaster Assistance, and Continuing Appropriations Act of 2009, which authorized the construction and operation of a new National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility in Manhattan, Kansas, also required Plum Island to be sold. The purpose of this hearing is to examine what steps can be taken to preserve Plum Island as open space in light of the pending sale.
Persons wishing to present pertinent testimony to the Committee at the above hearing should complete and return the enclosed reply form as soon as possible. It is important that the reply form be fully completed and returned so that persons may be notified in the event of emergency postponement or cancellation.
Oral testimony will be limited to ten minutes' duration. In preparing the order of witnesses, the Committee will attempt to accommodate individual requests to speak at particular times in view of special circumstances. These requests should be made on the attached reply form or communicated to Committee staff as early as possible. Ten copies of any prepared testimony should be submitted at the hearing registration desk. The Committee would appreciate advance receipt of prepared statements. In order to further publicize these hearings, please inform interested parties and organizations of the Committee's interest in hearing testimony from all sources.
In order to meet the needs of those who may have a disability, the Assembly, in accordance with its policy of non-discrimination on the basis of disability, as well as the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), has made its facilities and services available to all individuals with disabilities. For individuals with disabilities, accommodations will be provided, upon reasonable request, to afford such individuals access and admission to Assembly facilities and activities.
Member of Assembly
Committee on Environmental Conservation