Gov. Andrew Cuomo promised Monday that all Long Island state parks and beaches are on track to open by Memorial Day weekend, despite the ravaging effects of superstorm Sandy in October.
Construction has been underway for the last six months, repairing roads, landscaping and infrastructure, and trying to remedy the effect of drastic dune and beach erosion. More than 20 emergency contracts are in progress across Long Island.
"Our parks and beaches are not only popular destinations for vacationers, but they are also important economic drivers for our communities," Cuomo said.
The latest study by the Political Economy Research Institute of the University of Massachusetts found that visitors to state parks pay for as much as $1.9 billion in output and sales annually. Last year, four of Long Island's state parks ranked in the Top 10 most visited in the entire 179-park system in New York state.
"When you have more people visit just one of our attractions such as Jones Beach State Park every year than they do the Grand Canyon, it helps many to identify with just how important how facilities are in people's lives," said State Park Comissioner Rose Harvey.
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