COXSACKIE — The village of Coxsackie announced Tuesday it will receive state funding for Riverside Park improvements delayed since last November after a special proposition was withdrawn from the ballot due to costs incurred by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Village trustees passed a resolution that will establish New York state as the lead agency overseeing upgrades to the park.
“The state proposed upgrades to the park and it’s all a state project and the state is asking to be the lead agency for the SEQRA [State Environmental Quality Review Act],” Village Mayor Mark Evans said. “It’s a state-owned park and state money.”
The project would coincide with initiatives outlined in the proposed $3 billion Restore Mother Nature Bond Act.
The bond act, which was included in the 2020 budget, was scheduled to go to voters in a special proposition during the November election. The proposition was withdrawn from the ballot due to the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to governor.ny.gov.
“It was supposed to be on the ballot this November,” Evans said. “If that passed, the funds would be ready to go with this project.”
The $3 billion Restore Mother Nature Bond Act will, if approved, conserve 4,000 acres in the Hudson Valley, improve boat launches and other public sites along the Hudson River, restore 10,000 acres of wildlife habitat, help reduce resistance to climate change, protect public lands for future use and prevent algal blooms, according to scenichudson.org.
The state is eyeing upgrades to several riverfront parks along the Hudson, Evans said.
Information about the specific upgrades, the cost and timeline of the project were not immediately available Tuesday.
“Plans for the Hudson Eagles State Recreation Area, which includes the boat launch in Coxsackie, are under development, and State Parks will have more information on this project in the future,” according to a statement from the state Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation Office.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposed the creation of the Hudson Eagles State Recreation in January. The park will consist of five boat launches with pocket parks spanning approximately 30 miles from Hudson to Rensselaer.
“The governor’s call to create this totally unique outdoor recreation area based on the Hudson River is both innovative and exciting,” Scenic Hudson Director of Public Policy and Special Projects Andy Bicking said in a statement. “It will build new opportunities for riverfront communities to benefit from the state’s vibrant outdoor recreation economy that generates $3.5 billion annually in direct local spending. Scenic Hudson looks forward to working with local communities, state agencies and the governor to make this unprecedented access to the Hudson River a reality.”