Schumer pushes for study to help stop lakeshore flooding

Jun 10, 2019

In Niagara County, Monday, Senator Charles Schumer announced a plan to help combat flooding along Lake Ontario.

The Olcott Yacht Club is among the many businesses and homeowners along Lake Ontario using pumps and sandbags to prevent further damage from flood waters.
Credit Chris Caya WBFO News

During his stop, in Olcott, Schumer called on Congress to fully fund a study on how to strengthen infrastructure along the lake to permanently stop the flooding.
    
"Local residents had fish in their houses. That's how bad it is. This is not just a little flooding this is major flooding," Schumer said.

Sen. Charles Schumer met with local officials at the Olcott Yacht Club to discuss his plan to combat flooding.
Credit Chris Caya WBFO News

Hedley Boat Company owner David Hedley said his losses so far this year total over $250,000. Hedley says the flooding has hurt tourism and boating.

"This high water has raised the big logs and debris along the creeks and lakeshore and it's put it out in the lake. You can't go very far without hitting a log. It's dangerous," Hedley said.    
    
Schumer says the study would identify vulnerable shoreline areas and help the Army Corps of Engineers decide what to do about it. He says once the funding is approved, it should take about a year to complete.   
    
"We need to solve this problem once and for all. Not just with sandbags but with permanent structures that will prevent the flooding. The Army Corps knows how to do this. They're really good. They're experts," Schumer said.  

In the meantime, Schumer's says the International Joint Commission needs to open the flood gates on the St. Lawrence River to reduce the record high level of Lake Ontario.