MINEOLA — New York state is demanding a review of environmental conditions on Plum Island before the federal government can sell the island and move an infectious animal disease laboratory to a new facility in Kansas, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday.
“Before the sale of Plum Island can continue, Washington must step up and sign a legally binding consent order spelling out its full plan for cleaning up the Island and giving the state oversight authority to make sure the work has been done properly,” Cuomo said in a statement.
The 843-acre island off the eastern tip of Long Island houses a laboratory that studies infectious animal diseases that could imperil the nation’s livestock industry. Congress voted in 2009 to close the aging laboratory, which opened in 1954. Before that the property housed a Spanish-American War-era U.S. Army base; old parade grounds and decrepit artillery batteries remain on the eastern half of the island.
Legislation envisions using proceeds from the sale to defray the costs of moving operations to a new laboratory at Kansas State University, although members of Congress from New York and Connecticut introduced legislation earlier this year that would block the sale.
Environmentalists on both sides of Long Island Sound have ………..