Bellone calls for closing of Old Inlet Breach - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Bellone calls for closing of Old Inlet Breach

Posted: Updated:
The Old Inlet Breach on Fire Island. (National Park Service photo) The Old Inlet Breach on Fire Island. (National Park Service photo)

By ANDREA GRYMES, Fox 5 News

NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) --The waters were calm and peaceful Wednesday but Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said the the Old Inlet Breach on Fire Island is a major contributor to extensive flooding on the south shore of Long Island.

Bellone and other local elected officials are asking the Army Corps of Engineers to close the breach, which the officials say was widened during Superstorm Sandy.  They say it played a big role in the flooding in Lindenhurst and Mastic Beach during the recent nor'easter.

"We've seen flooding in places that have never flooded before," Bellone said.

But not everyone believes this will help.

"To spend $10 million or $16 million closing something that may not solve this problem is a complete waste of taxpayer money," said Tom Schultz of Bellport.

Opponents point to research from Stony Brook University that found no clear evidence of flooding as a result of the breach. They want nature to take its course unless other research emerges.

"The data would suggest that high tides and low tides we're experiencing on the Great South Bay are being held up and down the East Coast," Schultz said.

Paul Mandella, a fisherman, said the inlet is doing better things for the water quality on the bay.

When asked what scientists Bellone consulted, he responded they met with the state's Department of Environmental Conservation.

"I'm not concerned with the debate," Bellone said. "I'm concerned with the residents of the south shore who have suffered enough."

An Army Corps of Engineers has not yet received a formal request from the state to close the breach, a spokesperson said.

"The Corps of Engineers developed a breach contingency program in conjunction with the state of New York some time ago," said Ken Wells, the chief of public affairs. "If we receive a formal request, we would initiate planning and coordination to close the breach."

Bellone could not tell us exactly how much closing the breach would cost, but his office does say it would be federally funded.

Fox 5 reached out to the state DEC but have not yet heard back.

  • Long Island NewsLong Island NewsMore>>

  • Cops swarm home after disgruntled Call of Duty gamer calls in swatting hoax

    Cops swarm home after disgruntled Call of Duty gamer calls in swatting hoax

    Thursday, April 24 2014 12:05 PM EDT2014-04-24 16:05:27 GMT
    Heavily armed police officers descended on a home in Long Beach, Long Island thinking they might find a grisly murder scene. Instead they found a terrified woman who had no clue what they were talking about and her teenaged son playing video games.
    Heavily armed police officers descended on a home in Long Beach, Long Island thinking they might find a grisly murder scene. Instead they found a terrified woman who had no clue what they were talking about and her teenaged son playing video games.
  • Long Island teacher arrested for hit-and-run crash

    Long Island teacher arrested for hit-and-run crash

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 5:57 AM EDT2014-04-22 09:57:01 GMT
    SCPD photoSCPD photo
    A Long Island schoolteacher is accused of slamming her car into a parked minivan and then driving away while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, according to Suffolk County Police. With a description of the car that drove away, police drove around the area of the collision and found it in the parking lot of Center Moriches High School, police said.
    A Long Island schoolteacher is accused of slamming her car into a parked minivan and then driving away while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, according to Suffolk County Police. With a description of the car that drove away, police drove around the area of the collision and found it in the parking lot of Center Moriches High School, police said.
  • Special Olympics: Athlete Jessica Spitz

    Special Olympics: Athlete Jessica Spitz

    Friday, April 18 2014 6:35 PM EDT2014-04-18 22:35:09 GMT
    Jessica Spitz, 18, is training for one of the biggest days of her life. The Commack, Long Island, High School senior will be competing in the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games in the 100-yard dash and the shot put. From the moment Jessica joined Special Olympics last year, she was hooked.
    Jessica Spitz, 18, is training for one of the biggest days of her life. The Commack, Long Island, High School senior will be competing in the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games in the 100-yard dash and the shot put. From the moment Jessica joined Special Olympics last year, she was hooked.
Powered by WorldNow

KDFW FOX 4
400 N. Griffin Street
Dallas, Texas 75202

Main Station Directory:
(214) 720-4444
News Fax:
(214) 720-3263 or (214) 720-3333

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices