Erie Canal Neighbors Association

General Category => General ECNA Discussion => Topic started by: Doug K on January 22, 2020, 09:49:36 am

Title: One More Myth about the Erie Canal Debunked - Taxpayer Support
Post by: Doug K on January 22, 2020, 09:49:36 am
It's simply amazing what you can find on the Internet...especially about something that has become as controversial as the NY State Barge Canal... more myth busting by the Erie Canal Neighbors Association.

It's been said by a certain group, fighting against any and all changes being undertaken along the Canal System, that "they" are "owners" of the Erie Canal, and that ownership gives them a right to stand in the way of Embankment Integrity work, stand in front of any Reimagine the Canal efforts, and object to anything else they feel isn't in the best interest of their group.

Hold the phone... this news article appears to contradict all of that. In fact, it now appears that with the recent change of ownership of the NY Canal System to New York Power in 2017, NY Taxpayers are NO LONGER on the hook to pay for the annual losses incurred trying to manage, maintain and operate this historical waterway.

New York Power Authority is now picking up the tab for the Canal System, as it has been doing since April 2016

https://news.wbfo.org/post/piece-past-price-present-paying-erie-canal

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If you read down through this article you will come to a section talking about the fact that the operation of the NY Canals has been "in the red" for many years, at the expense of both NY State Taxpayers and also NYS Thruway users who help subsidize the canal with Thruway tolls.

That all ended when NYPA took over the ownership & operation of the whole system

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Read that statement from the NY Power Authority again:

In a written statement to NPR, the Power Authority says revenue from its hydropower plants, not taxpayers, is funding the canals from now on.

In the move to new ownership many things changed, besides the ongoing work to insure the Canal system is safe & sustainable for the next 100 years. We now understand that the move also means that costs to operate the canal  moved as well. No longer a burden on taxpayers, cost to operate, even at a loss, will be covered by the NY Power folks.

Any argument put forth, that say the public has a "right" to stand in the way of Canal public safety repair programs, or fight changes in how the NYS Canal system is managed or "Reimagined" based on the statement that "we all pay for the Erie Canal as taxpayers" is simply not true.. it's a bogus claim now that New York Power are the new owners.

This idea that "taxpayers" own the Erie Canal has been a major talking point by a group of "concerned citizens" who feel they have a right to interfere in decisions being made about canal safety & operation.

It now appears that the argument from this group can't hold water any better than the Barge Canal's unsafe embankments... another busted myth.