Town Awarded $27,347 NYSDEC “Trees for Tribs Grant” to Reforest Former Smith Farm in Center Moriches
Farmingville, NY – Supervisor Ed Romaine announced today that the Town of Brookhaven has been awarded a $27,347 “Trees for Tribs” grant from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC). The grant is 100% funded, therefore it is a “no match” grant. The reasoning of the grant is to reforest old farm fields where tributaries (tribs) run through. The trees slow down erosion and help take up pollutants, as well as create habitat for local fauna.
The reforestation will be conducted on Town property, formerly known as the Smith Farm It was purchased with Open Space funds and is located at the corner of Bay Avenue and Montauk Highway in East Moriches. The tributary that runs through the farm is called the Terrel River and it starts at Mill Pond, north of Montauk Highway and flows south through the property into Moriches Bay.
While preparing for the grant, the Town’s Division of Environmental Protection (DEP) reached out to the local Moriches Bay Civic Association, which has representatives from the Ketcham Inn, Audubon Society and the Farm Land Committee. Meetings occurred, and with the civics’ input, DEP presented a draft landscaping plan and received approval from the local DEC forester. The Town will use the funds for ground prep and invasive plant removal and community volunteers will plant the trees.
Supervisor Romaine said, “The Terrel River is an environmentally sensitive waterway that needs to be protected and preserved. I thank the DEC for awarding the grant to the Town, the Moriches Bay Civic Association for their input on this project and our own Division of Environmental Protection for the work they did to secure this grant.”
Councilman Dan Panico said, “The entire eco-system of our South Shore wetlands needs to be protected and reforesting is a big part of our plans at this location and others. I will continue to work with our Town environmental staff to identify other areas in my district that need to be addressed.”