State Senator Fasano Lends Support To Bill Establishing Long Island Sound Commission

March 13, 2009

Hartford, CT – State Senator Len Fasano (R-North Haven) joined with Attorney General Richard Blumenthal at a press conference in Hartford today highlighting RB 1078: An Act Establishing A Bi-State Long Island Sound Commission. The bill would repeal the Bi-State Long Island Sound Marine Resources Committee and replace it with a Bi-State Long Island Sound Commission. The Commission would be charged with reviewing and monitoring all issues involving Long Island Sound, specifically environmental and ecological concerns.

“Long Island Sound is a local treasure for both Connecticut and New York,” said Senator Fasano. “Since we share in enjoying this natural resource, I also believe we should share in protecting it. This commission would bring the best people and resources from both states together to safeguard the Sound.”

The commission would be established under the Department of Environmental Protection and would consist of 14 members; seven Connecticut residents, seven New York residents. Each member will serve two year terms.

Senator Fasano has a long history as a champion for the health and vitality of Long Island Sound. He co-chaired Governor Rell’s Long Island Sound LNG Task Force during the efforts of Broadwater Energy to build a floating liquefied natural gas terminal in Long Island Sound. That proposal, due in large part to the recommendations of the LNG Task Force, was defeated last year.

Senator Fasano has also played a large role in developing the concept of this proposed commission. Last July, Senator Fasano met with officials in New York, at a Summit on Energy Infrastructure. At the summit, participants discussed common concerns and ideas for improving the health of Long Island Sound as well as energy initiatives.

“While Broadwater’s plan was defeated, the fact remains that Long Island Sound continues to be threatened,” said Senator Fasano. “We cannot be complacent and think the safety and health of our shoreline is a given. By pooling our resources under this commission, we have the opportunity to be more proactive, rather than reactive in our defense of our natural resources. The time to act is now and I hope this bill is moved quickly through the legislative process.”