Tools

Public Outreach meeting held on Mohawk Valley Sustainability Plan

By LEXIE O'CONNOR

HERKIMER, N.Y. (WKTV) - The Mohawk Valley is putting together a plan to become more green. It's in hopes of winning a piece of Governor Andrew Cuomo's Cleaner, Greener Communities $90 million dollar grant. The first public meeting on the program was held Wednesday at Herkimer County Community College.

The consultants and local organizations involved are midway through putting together a plan for the Mohawk Valley to become more sustainable. The Cleaner, Greener Communities program was announced by Governor Cuomo in his 2011 State of the State address as a $100 million competitive grant program.

Almost 100 people filled Herkimer County Community College's McLaughlin College Center Auditorium Wednesday to hear about the program's data findings, ask their own questions, and learn how they can get involved.

All ten regions across the state are putting together sustainability plans, each already received $10 million dollars to start collecting data for the projects. Consultants hope this will benefit the regions by thinking about their futures even if they don't receive a portion of the grant.

"I think it really helps the region think about its future too because the more we understand what's being used now where the issues are it can help inform decision making," said Sustainability Consultant Rebecca Flora.

Data has already been collected on how energy in the Mohawk Valley is being used, where it comes from and also the region's transportation, land and water use and waste line management.

Part of the study is to also get input from the community on how they want to grow sustainably in the future, bringing not only a good economic future but a good quality of life.

"I mean this region has amazing water quality as a resource how do we retain that over time?" said Flora. "So a whole variety of issues that together create I think a better quality of life for the whole region."

The group plans to hold another public meeting after the first of the year. All ten regions plans are set to be completed by the end of March 2013.

You can find more information on the program and study at www.sustainablemohawkvalley.com.

What's On