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Federal Sandy Aid To Fund Dredging, Beach Replenishment On Long Island's South Shore

FIRE ISLAND, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) - A dredging project is set to begin to help fix some of the damage caused by superstorm Sandy on Long Island's South Shore.

The funding for the project will come from the $50.5 billion federal Sandy aid package passed by Congress last week.

Crews from the Army Corps of Engineers will dredge two and a half million cubic yards of sand from Fire Island Inlet, which was already shallow and took on even more sand when the storm hit.

Federal Sandy Aid To Fund Dredging, Beach Replenishment On Long Island's South Shore

That sand will be used to help replenish the beaches at Gilgo and Robert Moses State Parks, which were decimated by Sandy.

"If we can get the sand back on those beaches so that we'll be able to operate fully this coming summer, that would obviously be outstanding and for the millions of visitors that utilize Robert Moses State Park," New York State Parks Department spokesman George Gorman told WCBS 880 Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs.

Officials have called the dredging project a win-win that will help get beaches on Long Island ready for the upcoming summer season.

"Right now, we only have a couple of feet between the dune line and the actual ocean water during the high tide. Sometimes, it's right up to the dune if we have an excessive high tide. So there's really no sand for people to put their blankets on," Gorman told Xirinachs.

The Army Corps of Engineers have surveyed Fire Island Inlet and found that there are sandbars above the water level. And at Navigation Channel, crews determined that the depth of the water at low tide has been recorded nearly four times more shallow than it should be.

The total price tag for the dredging and replenishment project has not yet been determined.

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