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Village residents float ideas for block grants at hearing

Greenport residents presented ideas for community development block grant funds at a Village Board meeting last Monday. 

The public hearing was “to solicit ideas from the citizenry regarding a possible application for Village of Greenport for community development block grants, grant funds, for the fiscal year 2022,” Mayor George Hubbard said at the meeting. 

Ideas ranged from improving drainage to creating community repair and workshop spaces and focusing on improving the Moore’s Lane area. 

Greenport resident Patricia Hammes suggested using funds to “support the overall development” of the Moore’s Lane area, where there’s a skate park and a mini railroad is planned to run through the woods. The funds could also be used to help Greenport Rotary Club install bathrooms if need be, she said.

“I think that there’s a lot of untapped potential in terms of having that become a bigger recreational hub for the village,” Ms. Hammes said. 

Trustee Peter Clarke voiced support for the idea.

“I also concur with the idea of anything we could use to help the Rotary with the construction and development of bathrooms on Moore’s Lane,” he said. “That would be my vote on the best use of the money, especially if you can make the bathrooms ADA-compliant and find a location outside of the business district where we have services for visitors and residents.”

Greenport resident Margaret de Cruz proposed establishing a creative space for the village, such as a “fix-it clinic” or “repair cafe” where residents could collaborate on fixing goods rather than throwing them away. A tool library could also be useful, she said, pointing out that there’s no hardware store in Greenport.

“It becomes like a community thing where people can learn things and enjoy each other,” she said, adding that the space could also be used to host workshops and exchange skills.  

Another resident said funds could be used to improve drainage on Sixth Street or promote more long-term use of outdoor parklets. Improved drainage could help prevent pollution from entering local water bodies, he said. The parklets “really helped the ambiance of Greenport during the summer” and benefited both businesses and the community, he added. 

“The village treasurer will work on the application and put stuff together with the ideas that trustees have had and what we got from the public,” Mr. Hubbard said, closing the hearing.