EAB thanks student members and sets goals for the future

Front row left to right: Kelly Smith, Mary Grlic, Mary Carter Flanagan, Bonnie Ji and John Reilly. Back row left to right: Leo Stimmler, Laurence Quinn, Evelyn Fasano, Elizabeth Bailey and John Manning.

On April 28, the Environmental Advisory Board (“EAB”) met to recap their accomplishments over the past year and thank GCHS representatives Mary Grlic and Bonnie Ji for their contributions. Mary Grlic will study engineering at Rutgers University and Bonnie Ji will study computer science at Carnegie Mellon University. The commitment to our Village and the environment that these young women have brought to EAB has contributed to the momentum of this year.

Summary of EAB’s efforts over the past year

John Reilly opened the meeting by providing a summary of what has been accomplished by EAB over the past year. In the fall, the EAB re-opened a discussion about gas-powered leaf blowers that was ongoing within the village and the EAB. In light of the national attention on this issue and legislation passed in the Town of North Hempstead and other local communities, the EAB sought community input and made a recommendation to the Board. These efforts culminated in the Village of Garden City enacting a seasonal ban on gas-powered leaf blowers from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend and the licensing of landscapers. commercial. The license is now in effect and residents will enjoy calmer days and better air quality as the ban on gas-powered leaf blowers begins Saturday, May 28, 2022.

In December, EAB hosted a youth-focused roundtable on sustainability issues. The discussion included a recent college graduate, as well as college and high school students, and provided an opportunity to share ideas about sustainability initiatives and learn about educational opportunities and career in this growing field. EAB plans to host another youth-focused roundtable on sustainability in early January 2023.

In January, EAB provided residents with a presentation on lead in drinking water and heard from residents about their personal experiences with high lead samples. Village administrator Ralph Suozzi and H2M water consultants provided an update on lead in Garden City water. This main presentation is available on the EAB page of the village’s website for residents, and EAB plans to continue its efforts to raise community awareness of this issue and inform residents of the permit fee waiver by the Village Council for Service Line Replacement to help ease the financial burden of replacing lead service lines.

EAB invited Sarah J. Meyland, JD to present at the February Long Island State Aquifer Meeting. EAB member Elizabeth Bailey then discussed treatments currently being installed on Garden City wells, current efforts to conserve water on Long Island, and the best steps residents can take to conserve water. Village Administrator Ralph Suozzi and H2M Water Consultants provided an additional update on lead in Garden City water and were available to answer questions from residents.

In March, EAB member Kelly Smith presented a program on trees that included the role tree planting plays in Garden City planning, the many benefits of trees in suburban areas, and how Garden City residents can work to preserve and increase trees. Paul Blake, Chairman of the Board of Commissioners for Cultural and Recreational Affairs, presented Garden City’s provisions in place to protect our trees and the Village’s tree planting and maintenance practices. Guest speaker Vincent Drzewucki, of Cornell University Cooperative Extension of Nassau County, discussed tree care practices, native planting, and the many benefits of trees in suburban areas.

Meeting on the water scheduled for Wednesday, June 8

The EAB discussed topic ideas for the coming year. The next EAB meeting on Wednesday, June 8 will include a presentation on the Village Water Report and an opportunity for residents to ask questions. An update will be given to residents on the topics of lead in drinking water, the new water tower and the Village’s AOP water treatment. The importance of water conservation will be discussed with details on how residents can conserve water.

Future meetings planned by the EAB

Future meetings were also discussed on the topics of lawn care, energy efficiency, recycling and pollinators. EAB welcomes suggestions from residents on topics they would like to learn more about or initiatives they would like to see in our village. Email your suggestions or questions to mcarterflanagan@gardencityny.net.