A protest rally is being planned for Nov. 6 in Seaford that will voice opposition to a proposed privatization of a local sewage treatment facility.
Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano made a budget proposal in mid October that would involve privatizing the county’s three sewage treatment facilities, including the Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant in Wantagh as a cost-savings measure and revenue producer to help close a more than $300 million deficit. Phillip Franco, Co-Chairman of the Cedar Creek Health Risk Assessment Committee, has concerns about the privatization plan and decided to help organize the Nov. 6 protest rally scheduled for in Seaford, located just north of where the plant sits. Franco said he has been satisfied with recent improvements at the plant under Mangano and is concerned that if a private company oversees the facility they will not be as responsive.
“We’re asking Ed Mangano to please not undue all the good he has done at the plant by privatizing,” said Franco, a lifelong Seaford resident who has been a longtime advocate for the health and safety of area surrounding the sewage treatment facility.
Mangano spokesman Brian Nevin emphasized that the possibility of the county’s sewage treatment system being privatized is still in the preliminary stages. Nevin said the county has issued a request for qualifications to take over the sewage treatment system and a request for proposals will likely be sent out in the next 60 days. He said Mangano has invested more than $75 million into the county’s sewage treatment facilities and is committed to see them maintained at a high level if privatized.
“We’re not going to move forward with privatization unless it’s best for the community,” said Nevin. "We need to make sure that the experts are running these plants, people that will be held accountable by both government and by residents."
Specific details of the Nov. 6 protest rally at Cedar Creek are still being organized. Franco said other issues such as the possible closure of two police precincts and the in Seaford may also be raised during the rally.
Nevin said the Mangano administration is planning to meet with Franco and other community leaders on Nov. 2 to discuss their concerns on the possible privatization of the Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant, which is located in the vicinity of the and in Wantagh. County officials attended a meeting this past spring to that have been done to the plant. During a Nassau County Legislature meeting last December, for recent renovations he instituted at the facility.
Nassau County's other two sewage treatment plants that would be affected by the proposed privatization plan are located in Bay Park and Glen Cove. The Cedar Creek and Bay Park plants process 85 percent of the sewage collected within the county and each treat roughly 58 millions of gallons per day, according to county officials.