Senate Passes Lesser Amendment to Greenlight Dredging of Laurel Park Pond in Longmeadow

BOSTON — The Massachusetts State Senate voted on Thursday to authorize $685,000 in bonds to the Town of Longmeadow for the dredging of Laurel Park Pond. The measure was proposed by Sen. Eric P. Lesser after discussion with town officials about the community’s needs in environmental and recreational investments. The funding request was added to a Senate bond bill promoting climate change adaptation, environmental and natural resource protection, and investment in recreational assets.

“This bill serves as an opportunity to bring attention to local priorities at the State House. Laurel Park is a beloved park in Longmeadow. I have fond memories of growing up fishing and hiking around Laurel Pond, and get to enjoy bringing my own family there now. This is a worthy project that will improve the quality of life for our residents, and I hope Governor Baker releases the funds to make it happen,” said Sen. Lesser.

The pond has not been dredged since at least 1997. Dredging is an important process to remove sediment that has built up on the pond floor and improve clarity by removing harmful algae.

The bill authorizes spending on certain types of infrastructure projects, including support for environmental programs at the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and other agencies ranging from air and water quality monitoring to hazardous waste cleanup and the restoration of rivers, wetlands, streams and lakes.

The bill will now be reconciled with a version passed by the State House of Representatives, and the Governor must ultimately decide whether to release the funds from the appropriate executive offices to finance the projects.