Sustainable Long Island
May 2014
Sustainable Long Island Newsletter
The one-stop-shop...
For all Sustainable Long Island news! 
In This Issue
Citi Foundation Awards $50,000 to Sustainable Long Island
Southeast Hicksville Public Open House
Community Garden Builds
Film Screening: A Fierce Green Fire
LIRR's Third Track Could Bring Countless Benefits
This Bill Would Help Build the Kinds of Communities Where Millennials Want to Live
Board of Directors

Charlotte Biblow, Esq: President
Farrell Fritz, P.C.

Lauren Furst: Executive Vice President

Pathways to Wealth, LLC 


Robert Bernard: Treasurer 

Capital One Bank


Lennard Axinn: Secretary 

Island Estates


Russ Albanese

Albanese Organization Inc.
Jeff Arestivo  Citibank
Dr. Calvin O. Butts, III
SUNY College at Old Westbury


Dr. Miriam K. Deitsch

Farmingdale State College,
State University of New York


Jeff Kraut

North Shore - LIJ Health System


Kevin McDonald

The Nature Conservancy
Ruth Negr
Lidija Nikolic
Bank of America


Mitchell H. Pally

Long Island Builders Institute


Dr. Robert Scott

Adelphi University 


Ron Shiffman

Pratt Institute



If you or your organization wishes to be a future enewsletter sponsor, please email for rates and opportunities.
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Citi Foundation Awards $50,000 to Sustainable Long Island 

Grant in support of ongoing recovery efforts in the City of Long Beach 

Sustainable Long Island recently announced it has been awarded a $50,000 grant from the Citi Foundation in support of the nonprofit organization's recovery and resiliency efforts throughout the City of Long Beach. This ongoing program aims to bolster the struggling small business community and to ultimately create a more economically vibrant Long Beach.


"Since Hurricane Sandy devastated the City of Long Beach in October of 2012, many businesses have closed and others are still in jeopardy of closing," said Amy Engel, Executive Director of Sustainable Long Island. "Due to the Citi Foundation's commitment to recovery, Sustainable Long Island will work with businesses to provide tools and resources they need to become stronger and more resilient."


Sustainable Long Island's continued efforts will include working directly with the Chamber of Commerce, the City of Long Beach's Local Development Corporation, the City Manager's office, and many local community groups. Working with small businesses, Sustainable Long Island will:

  • Facilitate forums for small business owners to discuss additional strategies for engaging customers and driving business to local districts within the City
  • Continue to develop marketing efforts to promote Long Beach in order to ensure year-round sustainability for small businesses
  • Offer job training, career development, and business development workshops for the residents of the North Park section of Long Island - the most underserved in the City

By the end of the grant period (12 month timeline effective immediately), Sustainable Long Island will have affected change in two key areas by:

  • Assisting underserved individuals by providing resources for small businesses impacted by Superstorm Sandy
  • Preventing the closure and/or facilitating the reopening of numerous Long Beach based small businesses.

The City of Long Beach will continue to become a stronger, more resilient community with a more vibrant workforce, renewed economic activity, and thriving local businesses that are better prepared to weather future storms. It is Sustainable Long Island's firm and continuing belief that this combination is the key to the long-term economic and environmental sustainability of the City of Long Beach.

Southeast Hicksville Public Open House 

Brownfield Opportunity Area Step II Project 

The Town of Oyster Bay is hosting a public open house meeting about the Southeast Hicksville Brownfield Opportunity Area (BOA) Step II project and wants your input:


 Monday, June 9, 2014



Come at any time, stay as long as you like!  


 William P. Bennett Community Center, 28 West Carl Street, Hicksville, NY 11801


This open house will provide a forum for the public to provide input on opportunities for positive change in Southeast Hicksville. During the meeting you will have the opportunity to:

  • Learn about the NYS BOA Program
  • Hear about Southeast Hicksville BOA project goals and objectives
  • Refine the community vision
  • Provide feedback on strategies and concept plans aimed at addressing critical issues within the study area and achieving community goals
For more information on both projects, visit

Community Garden Builds 

In Freeport this past weekend, In Long Beach this June 


This past weekend Sustainable Long Island, in partnership with the Cedarmore Corporation, The Long Island Volunteer Center, LI Green Market, and BJ's Wholesale Club, brought together over 20 volunteers to Zion Cathedral in Freeport to add to an existing community garden for residents of the Village of Freeport.


Thanks to funding from Bank of America, volunteers prepared the site and constructed seven additional garden beds, while also planting summer crops, including tomatoes and cabbage. 


The build provided the opportunity for people to think and learn about eating healthier and supporting locally grown food. A community garden comes with many benefits, some of which include:

  • Improving the quality of life for all involved
  • Providing a catalyst for neighborhood and community development
  • Stimulating social interaction
  • Encouraging self-reliance
  • Beautifying neighborhoods
  • Producing nutritious foods
  • Preserving green space
  • Spurring economic development
  • Promoting a sense of place
  • Cutting down on crime 
  • Teaching various skills that are transferable in the workplace


Join Sustainable Long Island and the City of Long Beach for a Community Garden Build on Saturday, June 7 beginning at 10AM at the corner of Riverside Boulevard and East Pine in Long Beach, adjacent to Sherman Brown Park.  


Citigroup volunteers taking part in Citi's Global Community Day will join community members to construct garden beds and plant seeds and seedlings at the site.


Contact if you'd like to volunteer!


Film Screening: A Fierce Green Fire  

Reserve your tickets today

Sustainable Long Island presents an inspiring film screening of A Fierce Green Fire, the first big picture exploration of the environmental movement.


Join Sustainable Long Island on Monday, June 16, 2014 at Landmark on Main Street in Port Washington from 5:30pm - 9:00pm for:

  • An exclusive film screening of A Fierce Green Fire, which chronicles one of the largest and most crucial movements of the 20th and 21st centuries.
  • A cocktail hour with wine provided by Bedell Cellars, whose Merlot was the first Long Island wine in history to be served at the Presidential Inauguration (2009).
  • An interactive question and answer session discussing the film's key messages with Long Island leaders, including moderator Diane Masciale, General Manager of WLIW21.

This stirring documentary pans 50 years of grassroots and global activism from the 1960s-2009 and connects the major causes of environmentalism, from conservation to climate change.  


Tickets are $50 per person. Student pricing of $25 with valid ID is available. Please contact Sustainable Long Island's Director of Development Stephanie DeGarabedian for more information at 516-873-0230.  


All proceeds from the event will go to helping advance Sustainable Long Island's mission of promoting economic development, environmental health, and social equity. 


This event is proudly sponsored by Level Solar:



LIRR's Third Track Could Bring Countless Benefits 

Thousands of jobs and millions in revenue predicted

(via The Long Island Press) - Less than 10 miles of new railroad track could make a huge difference to Long Island's economic future, according to a report released by the Long Island Index, a nonprofit group funded by the Rauch Foundation.


Called the Third Track-or the Fast Track, as transportation advocates have promoted it-the additional 9.8-mile segment along the Long Island Rail Road's main line between Floral Park and Hicksville would remove the bottleneck in the commuter railroad system, which has been impeding the expansion of service for decades and usher in a new era of regional mobility and concurrent growth.


"The Third Track has been an idea that Long Islanders have hoped would happen for at least 40 years," said Nancy Rauch Douzinas, president of the Rauch Foundation. "That's a long time for a good idea to sit on a shelf."


The report predicts that the Third Track would add 14,000 jobs, $3 billion in personal income, $5.6 billion to our Gross Regional Product, 35,000 new residents, $40 million in additional sales tax revenue and $103 million in added property tax revenue-all by 2035, a year chosen by the study's authors because it would mark 10 years after the supposed completion of the project.


"We believe [the Third Track project] will be a game changer for the Long Island region," said Kevin Law, president and chief executive officer of the LIA and co-vice chairman of the Long Island Regional Economic Development Council. "The Long Island Rail Road is an asset...and we need to support it because it really is part of the lifeline of our Long Island economy."


Many obstacles remain in the way before the Third Track becomes a reality, from community opposition along the route to serious problems facing public transportation funding, but the study is the first of its kind to quantify the fiscal benefits that may accrue if the $1.1.-billion capital project is ever constructed. At present, it's slated to begin in 2020 and be completed by 2024.


Prospects for the Third Track aren't so daunting, according to Neal Lewis, executive director of the Sustainability Institute at Molloy College, because the LIRR has modified its original idea so it will have a smaller impact on the neighborhoods along the line.

"I think it will be a lot easier to gain community support because the things the community was concerned about in the past have been changed in the new proposal," Lewis told the Press.


Read more on the story here... 


This Bill Would Help Build the Kinds of Communities Where Millennials Want to Live 

By Ben Adler of  

Where we live and how we get around are inextricably linked. But until recently, the federal government separated housing and transportation policy into completely separate silos. Federal transportation dollars can only be used for building highways or (to a much lesser extent) transit systems. Federal housing dollars largely go to supporting homeownership, and sprawl, with a smaller amount used to subsidize renting for lower-income families.


This is exactly the wrong approach if we want to build sustainable communities. We need to design our housing and transportation systems in tandem. Transit stations should be surrounded by dense clusters of housing, shopping, and offices. This is the kind of walkable, transit-accessible urbanism that millennials want.


The Obama administration has aligned some investments in housing and transportation through its Partnership for Sustainable Communities. But the vast majority of federal transportation dollars are still simply handed out to states via formulas and spent on highways and other roads. The Sustainable Communities efforts have involved just a tiny fraction of all transportation and housing spending, and it became even tinier after Republicans won control of the House of Representatives in 2010.


Developing transit-oriented housing requires infrastructure investments: sidewalks have to be built or widened, traffic-calming measures like median strips may be needed, bike lanes may be created and street lamps installed. Federal transportation money currently can't be used for any of that, even while it can be used to build a road to nowhere.


"In a lot of cases, local government wants the opportunity to develop, improve their tax base, build more housing, but they may not have money to put in the new infrastructure," says David Goldberg, spokesperson for Transportation for America. "They might sometimes require the developer to do it, and the developer may be able to get financing for apartments or retail, but public infrastructure may be an additional cost they cannot wrap into their financing."

Read more of Ben Adler's column here... 


Together we can build a more
sustainable Long Island


These challenging economic times have magnified the problems we Long Islanders face each and every day. With our leaders warning us of tougher times to come, thinking regionally and acting locally is urgent. It is in all of our best interests to stay engaged and do what we can together to build a more sustainable Long Island.


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The Board and Staff of Sustainable Long Island