Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth brokered last week’s meeting, whose attendees included PSEG Long Island President Dave Daly, members of Residents for a More Beautiful Port Washington, and Councilwoman Dina De Giorgio.
The gathering, to address the aesthetic impacts of a plan to shore up the area’s electrical system, took place at town hall and “went very well,” Bosworth said.
“I think that it was important for Residents to hear directly from Dave Daly, and PSEG also understood the importance of having a public meeting,” which is expected to take place within the next two weeks, Bosworth said.
The public meeting’s aim is to provide an understanding of the necessity for doing the project,
what accommodations PSEG will make for beautifying the areas it is working on, and what options are available.
The meeting is not expected to halt the continuation of the project, which includes the erection of 80-foot utility poles. But at the town hall meeting, Daly did say in project areas where there are double poles, one will be removed.
“It was a really productive meeting, with a respectful tone on all sides,” said Mindy Germain, executive director of Residents for a More Beautiful Port Washington.
PSEG “understands the need for the public meeting,” Germain said. “People want to get information; they see these tall poles going up. We look forward to public education, as well as reinforcement of the commitments made at our meeting.”
One area that was explored was federal funding for underground wiring. Port Washington Boulevard does not qualify because the funding is for existing lines, not new lines like the kind going up on the boulevard, Germain said. Main Street would be a candidate for underground lines because it is an existing line, she said, although an engineering evaluation would be necessary.
Daly also said PSEG will look into planting trees along the areas that are being impacted by the new tall poles.
The town hall meeting is the latest development for the project, which first came to light in January when Residents for a More Beautiful Port Washington hosted officials from PSEG and came away dissatisfied.
Residents called for a public meeting, but were rebuffed by PSEG. It wasn’t until the town got involved that last week’s gathering was held and the public meeting agreed to.