FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 7, 2012
SCHUMER TO CALL ON FEDS TO DESIGNATE PORTION OF HEMPSTEAD HARBOR ‘MAY NEWBURGER COVE’; DESIGNATION REQUIRES FEDERAL APPROVAL, SCHUMER CALLS FOR EXPEDITED APPROVAL PROCESS
Schumer Presses National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to Designate Section of Hempstead Harbor in Port Washington as ‘May Newburger Cove’ to Recognize Accomplishments of Trailblazing Long Island Public Servant
Renaming of Cove Requires Federal Review Before Navigation Charts Can Reflect Name Change; Schumer Will Call for Feds to Expedite Application So Next Publication of Maps Reflects the Change
Schumer: May Newburger’s Contributions to North Hempstead and All of Long Island Can Forever Be Immortalized in Hempstead Harbor
United States Senator Charles E. Schumer, joined by Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman, called for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to rename a portion of the Hempstead Harbor after trailblazing former North Hempstead Town Supervisor, and former State Assemblywoman, May Newburger. Before the cove can officially be renamed, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) must approve the application and NOAA must make changes on federally published navigational charts. Schumer today called for the approval process to be expedited for the 91 year-old former supervisor so that navigational charts will have the new designation before their next publication, which occurs every 1-2 years, depending on needed updates. Schumer and Kaiman also unveiled a “May Newburger Cove” sign that will welcome visitors to the newly named Cove upon federal approval.
“May Newburger is a groundbreaking public servant who not only turned around North Hempstead as its supervisor, but had a tremendous impact on New Yorkers from Port Washington to Potsdam as a state Assemblywoman,” said Schumer. “Our effort to immortalize her work in this community with the designation of May Newburger Cove is the least we can do to celebrate her service.”
“May Newburger created the model for the Towns wetland restoration efforts when she was town supervisor. Her efforts led to what is now a thriving waterfront and it is vital that we preserve the history of this incredible trailblazer," said Supervisor Jon Kaiman. "Today we have the benefit of tens of millions of dollars collected over the last decade through our federal and state representatives. Working together we have made a difference that will benefit our town for decades to come."
In order for a name change to officially take effect, an application must be submitted to the US Board of Geographic Names, part of the USGS, which is a Federal Advisory Board in charge of maintaining uniform geographic name usage throughout the Federal Government and has the authority to change nautical charts. Upon approval, NOAA must then officially make the changes and publish new nautical charts. The Town of Hempstead submitted its proposal on Friday. Gaining approval for the name change, without an expedited process, could take 9-18 months. NOAA cannot update charts until the approval is completed, stretching the timeline for designation of the May Newburger Cove. Schumer is urging the agency to expedite the approval process so that the next publication of nautical charts will quickly be renamed May Newburger Cove.
May Newburger was the first female Supervisor of a Town on Long Island and served five terms in office, beginning in 2004. Prior to being elected Supervisor, May spent two years as a Town Councilwoman and eight years as a New York State Assemblywoman, from 1979 to 1986. As supervisor, May, transformed a $7 million budget deficit to a $7.7 million surplus and made North Hempstead the first town on Long Island to adopt a debt reduction plan that emphasized the need for long-term strategies. May built a reputation around her dedication to the environment, securing $200,000 from the Environmental Protection Agency to designate New Cassel as a Brownfields Pilot Community and she is credited with creating The Environmental Legacy fund which continues to be a tool to preserve open space and create additional park land in all parts of the Town.
In his letter to NOAA Administrator Dr. Jane Lubchenco and the Board of Geographic Names, Schumer urged the agency to move as quickly as possible to approve the application so that the next round of nautical maps published has the designation listed.
Dear Director McNutt and Dr. Jane Lubchenco:
I am writing to ask that the United States Geological Survey and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) designate a portion of Hempstead Harbor in Port Washington, “May Newburger Cove.” It is my understanding that USGS must approve the Town of North Hempstead’s application for renaming in order for NOAA to print the new name on updated navigational charts. Since this process can take up to three years to finalize, I am asking that your agencies work together to expedite the town’s application in order to honor the many achievements of May Newburger.
The aforementioned portion of Hempstead Harbor will be renamed after May Newburger, a strong local leader in the Town of North Hempstead and a great public servant. May Newburger was an Assemblywoman for eight years until 1986. I’m proud to say I witnessed her strong leadership firsthand while serving alongside of her in the New York State Assembly. She was also Town Councilwoman for two years before being elected as the Supervisor of the Town of North Hempstead. She led the town as supervisor for 10 years. She was also appointed as the head of the Nassau County Planning Federation. The community knows May Newburger as a trailblazer who dedicated her life to enhancing the lives of those residing in the Town of North Hempstead. She paved the way for women to become more involved in local government. May Newburger played an instrumental role in many of the town’s environmental projects and has always been an outspoken supporter of environmentally sustainable and energy efficient issues. One of her most noteworthy environmental accomplishments includes turning an environmentally damaged locale in the Town of North Hempstead into a remarkable golf course, Harbor Links, which won the “Environmental Stewardship Award.” She is also known for turning the Town of North Hempstead’s budget deficit into a $7.7 million surplus. Mrs. Newburger’s distinguished career in public service is very much deserving of this honor.
It is clear that there is no other leader in the Town of North Hempstead who merits this accomplishment as much as May Newburger. The vast achievements of May Newburger can forever be immortalized in Hempstead Harbor. I strongly urge you to officially designate this portion of Hempstead Harbor, “May Newburger Cove.”
Charles E. Schumer