Letter Sent to IJC Regarding Lake Ontario Outflows

By on April 3, 2018

Greece Town Supervisor Bill Reilich announced that on April 3, 2018 a letter was sent to International Joint Commission Chairwoman Lana Pollack calling on the board to maintain or increase Lake Ontario outflows.

The letter requests that IJC maximize the outflows from the Lake Ontario system to reduce the flooding risk for New York shoreline residents and businesses. If the IJC reduces outflows, shoreline residents would face similar flooding situations as last year. The IJC must sustain or increase the outflow levels in order to decrease the chances of potential flooding. The letter sent to the IJC requests that the outflow decisions be made in accordance with the 1909 Boundary Waters Treaty which call for the equitable sharing of this burden between New York and the Montreal region.

The Town of Greece has already begun deploying sang bags, sandbagging equipment, a berm structure, new piping, and other response assets to ensure minimal damage in the event of flooding this year. The Department of Environmental Conservation is also assisting residents through its continued efforts in the emergency permitting process, which allows property owners to bolster break-walls and other protective structures. The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services has already started to install aqua dams and sandbags along portions of Lake Ontario in anticipation of flooding this spring.

“Since its launch, I have opposed the International Joint Commissions plan to raise the lake levels and advocated against its implementation. I have contacted International Joint Commission Chairwoman Lana Pollack asking her and the IJC Board to maximize outflows from the Lake Ontario system, which will minimize potential flooding this year. Town of Greece residents experienced significant damages during the flooding events last year due to the decisions made by the IJC. I am asking the IJC Board to start making decisions in accordance with the 1909 Boundary Waters Treaty, which calls for equitable sharing between New York and the Montreal region. I will continue contacting the the IJC and other government officials until a plan that takes into account our water-front residents is adopted,” Reilich said.

Click here to read the letter.

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