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Conference on Water Resources & the Regional Economy: Dec 13, 2010

On December 13, 2010, the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation’s Hudson River Estuary Program brought together more than 300 business leaders, economic planners, municipal officials, and water advocates to create a shared understanding of the challenges and opportunities of water management in the Hudson Valley. The goal was to recognize challenges, find opportunities, and launch solutions that will support the economy and conserve the environment, recognizing the many ways that water contributes to human well-being.

The conference’s many discussions were founded on two key assertions from Hudson Valley Water: Opportunities and Challenges (Fall 2010) published by the SUNY New Paltz Center for Research, Regional Education and Outreach:

  • the abundance of water is one of our region’s most important current and future resources; and
  • there is an urgent need for regional water resource planning and protection to ensure the Hudson Valley’s future.

Conference Agenda and Presentations

Program Brochure (PDF, 480 KB)

Welcome and Overview

Download the Welcome and Overview (PDF, 730 KB) including the following presentations:

Mike Hein (represented by James J. Hansen), Ulster County Executive
Jim Tierney, Assistant Commissioner for Water Resources, NYSDEC
Dennis Suszkowski, Science Director, Hudson River Foundation
Issue overview
Fran Dunwell, Hudson River Estuary Program Coordinator, NYSDEC
Why this is important
Business perspective:  Scott Olin, Chief Operating Officer, Empire Merchants North
Municipal perspectives:  Steve Finkle, Director of Economic Development, City of Kingston
Cas Holloway, Commissioner, New York City Dept. of Environmental Protection


Rapid Problem Statements

Download the Rapid Problem Statements (PDF, 130 KB) including the following presentations:

“The importance of water infrastructure and water access for waterfront revitalization”
The Honorable Phillip Amicone, Mayor, City of Yonkers 
Download Mayor Amicone's Presentation (PDF, 4.75 MB) (Note: This is a large file and may take time to load)
“The importance of water availability as a regional economic asset”
Lance Matteson, Executive Director, NYS Economic Development Council
“The importance of watershed protection for ensuring clean and abundant water”
James Tierney, Assistant Commissioner for Water Resources, NYSDEC


"Opportunities and Challenges" Presentation

Download "Opportunities and Challenges" (PDF, 135 KB) including the following presentations:

Gerald Benjamin, SUNY New Paltz Center for Research, Regional Education and Outreach (CRREO)
CRREO Paper “Hudson Valley Water: Opportunities and Challenges”
Scott Cuppett, NYSDEC Hudson River Estuary Program/Cornell University, co-author
Russell Urban Mead, Chazen Companies, co-author

The Honorable Maurice Hinchey, US Representative, 22nd Congressional District


Breakout Session Topics

Download the Breakout Session Summaries (PDF, 150 KB) including Conclusion and Actions Summaries

1. Paying for water, sewer, and green infrastructure:  how can we get creative?
2. Adopting green infrastructure strategies:  how can we innovate?
3. Managing our water assets regionally:  how can we organize ourselves to better conserve our water, provide for sustainable growth, and achieve efficiencies?
4. Aligning land use with water and economic goals:  how will the new NYS Smart Growth and Infrastructure Act affect our approaches?
5. Water access and waterfront revitalization as an economic strategy:  how can we improve?
6. Green cities, clear waters:  how do we work together to create synergies for jobs, housing, and water?

"How can we speak with one voice for the region?" Facilitator Willie Janeway, Region 3 Director, NYSDEC