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State, environmental groups agree on new TZ Bridge environmental issues

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TARRYTOWN – The state has reached an agreement with environmental groups Riverkeeper and Scenic Hudson on permits that will include extensive environmental protective measures and mitigation funding to protect the Hudson River and minimize environmental impacts during construction of the new Tappan Zee Bridge.

As a result, the state Department of Environmental Conservation Wednesday issued an environmental permit containing the protections authorizing the New York State Thruway Authority to proceed with construction.

Riverkeeper’s Hudson River Program Director Phillip Musegaas said the agreement provides for a stronger permit that is more enforceable.

“The state and the Thruway Authority have committed to working with Riverkeeper and Scenic Hudson to give us more of a public oversight in the monitoring role and so we will be having regular meetings with the Thruway and the state has agreed to increase the mitigation funding,” Musegaas said.

That will be increased from $8 million to $11.5 million.

Scenic Hudson President Ned Sullivan said the agreement produced “significant improvements to the project design that will result in few and less intensive environmental impacts.”