Flooding along Lake Ontario has pummeled shoreline residents and businesses this summer. As a result, international body charged with overseeing the lake has come under scrutiny to let more water out of the lake.
The International Joint Commission (IJC) controls water levels on Lake Ontario. Members of Congress have been putting pressure on the IJC to mitigate flooding and reconsider its long term water management plan, Plan 2014.
Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D-Utica) has been a critic of the IJC’s reluctance to increase flow rates and alleviate flooding over the past few months.
"Clearly in my mind, the plan is not working as written,” Brindisi said this week after meeting with IJC commissioners and shoreline property owners.
"While there are shipping interests and energy interests and environmental interests, the human interest, specifically, the residents and business owners along the shore are first and foremost in my mind," he added.
Reps. Elise Stefanik (R-Schuylerville) and John Katko (R-Camillus) also met with IJC commissioners over the summer. Brindisi said the communication between local stakeholders and the IJC has improved drastically from earlier this year, but the IJC's message hasn't changed much.
The IJC wants to make shorter term adjustments so flooding doesn't happen next year and then consider revising Plan 2014 later on.