Pursuant to a permit obtained from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the Village is implementing a five (5) year program to reduce the impact on our tidal and freshwater wetlands from storm water runoff. A major component of this program is the reduction of pollutants, such as pathogen containing pet wastes, trash, petroleum products, and nutrients and toxics found in lawn care and gardening products from being discarded into or from leaching into the Village’s drainage systems.
Another source of bay and pond pollution is the elevated geese populations. Feeding geese encourages them to stay year around, interrupting normal migratory patterns.
To meet the program goals, the Village is asking residents to get involved and help. By being careful with waste disposal, chemical use, cleaning up after our pets and not feeding waterfowl, we can reduce the impairments of the receiving waters and improve the aesthetics of the community.
You can help keep our environment clean by:
- REPORTING ILLEGAL PUMPING, DUMPING or direct connection to a drain or waterway to the Nassau County Illicit Discharge Hotline (516) 571-6863.
- CLEANING UP AFTER YOUR PET Pet waste contains harmful bacteria and organisms that can spread disease. Pick up pet waste; seal it in a plastic bag, and dispose of it in trashcans. Don’t hose waste into storm drains. Drains are a direct conduit to our waterways and beaches. Help keep our neighborhood, beaches, and waterways healthy and clean.
- NOT FEEDING GEESE AND DUCKS While we all love our “feathered friends”, feeding them interrupts the natural migratory cycle. Birds that would normally migrate south in the winter to find food, take up residence if food is “artificially” provided. Further, these resident birds attract migrating birds that in turn will stay if food is present. The result of artificial waterfowl feeding can be large flocks of resident birds that create a nuisance in our parks, athletic fields, golf courses and lawns, and place an extra pollution load on our waterways. Once feeding is discontinued, geese will disperse and revert to higher quality natural foods. Geese that depend on human handouts are also less likely to migrate when severe winter weather arrives, and are more vulnerable to disease.
- KEEPING YOUR SEPTIC SYSTEM WELL MAINTAINED Generally, you should have your septic system inspected at least every 3 years by a professional and your tank pumped as recommended by the inspector (generally every 3 to 5 years). Household chemicals, gasoline, oil, pesticides, antifreeze, paint, etc. should be taken to the Town S.T.O.P collection sites and not flushed. Overflowing septic systems can pollute our waterways.
- PROPERLY USING FERTILIZERS and PESTICIDES ON YOUR LAWN AND GARDEN If you think you must use heavy amounts of pesticides to grow a beautiful lawn, think again. A bright green, weed-free lawn can be yours by following these simple steps:
- Mow your lawn only as needed. If the grass has gotten too tall, don’t mow it down all at one time. Mow gradually, cutting no more than an inch off with the first mowing. Allow the lawn to recover for a day or two, and then trim another inch. Continue cutting an inch at a time until you reach the desired height.
- Water wisely. Don’t water on a timer. Some grasses need more water than others, so figure out what kind of grass you have before you decide to water it frequently. When you do water, soak the grass through to the roots, not just the top of the blades.
- Use slow-release, organic fertilizers. Most lawn and garden centers now offer several organic fertilizers along with the more standard varieties.
- Keep all toxic materials in a locked cabinet or garden shed. If you must continue to use pesticides on a limited basis, be sure to remove children and their toys as well as pets from any area where the chemicals are being stored or used.
- DISPOSING OF YOUR GARBAGE PROPERLY Garbage should be kept in containers with lids that are animal proof. Open containers or plastic garbage bags provide an inviting target for raccoons and other wildlife. We can keep our garbage from being strewn about the neighborhood and ending up in our waterways by using the right containers.
- SEPARATING YOUR RECYCLABLES AND PUTTING THEM OUT ON THE DESIGNATED DAY It is important to recycle paper, plastics, glass, and metals. Reusing these materials and keeping them out of our environment is one way to keep our waters clean. Please help by separating paper, glass, plastics and metals and putting them out on the designated day or the night before.
- DISPOSING OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTES AT A TOWN SITE The Town of Oyster Bay’s S.T.O.P. (“stop throwing out pollutants”) collection and used motor oil disposal recycling programs are available to all Village residents. I urge all residents to take advantage of both programs.Under the S.T.O.P. program, the Town will accept for disposal chemicals such as pesticides, aerosol cans, household cleaners and waste motor oil. The Town will also accept batteries, propane tanks and tires. For more information call the Town at (516) 677-5748.
SO PITCH IN
We can all work together to keep our Village beautiful and our waterways clean. We are interested in your opinion about the Stormwater Management Program and would appreciate it if you would fill out and return the survey.
Draft Stormwater comments can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.