Author Topic: Stop the Canal Clear-cut Group continues spreading Erie Canal disinformation on Facebook  (Read 235 times)

Doug K

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Once again, it's more misinformation about the Erie Canal being spread within the Stop the Canal Clear-cut group on Facebook.

Of course it's one of the two co-founders, of this pseudo-environmental group, making statements that are easily disputed with facts & websites found on the internet.

This time the misinformation is about who is responsible to maintain SAFETY along the NYS Canal System, and who dictates what information can be shared with the public, about the Erie Canal, Erie Canal maintenance, and FOIL requests about the Canal System.


Here's Ms Maier sharing a recent document she requested about Embankment Safety Repairs made near Albion, NY this past year.

Virginia Borden Maier  September 17, 2022:

It is too nice an afternoon to spend a long time on this, but I have to share that I just reviewed possibly the silliest response to a request for public information. I asked for the information the Canal Corporation used to make the decision to do a “seepage repair” on the embankment near Gaines, NY this past spring. After 6 months of being put off, I received a heavily redacted report that gives me plenty of information about the locations where these repairs were made (I mean, the canal corporation had a press release about the location of these repairs!) but nearly all information about the actual calculated risk or the engineer’s recommendations about next steps were blacked out. You know, for safety.


She included this image:




And like good minions, the members of this Facebook group clammer to add their own two cents, agreeing with Ms Maier wholeheartedly, albeit without one ounce of fact to support these preposterous statements.

Dina Alexander : Well that’s not suspicious.

Elizabeth R. Agte: I feel safer, you are right!

Janice Gouldthorpe: Glad you are all safe.

Laurie Williamson: Safety from being sued or vilified in print!

Kevin Dorey:"But hey, they showed the one sentence that might make it look like they did something good. What's behind those black boxes? Nothing of importance, of course!

Steve Roshia Jr.: After the NYPA took over the canal Corp, it became one of the shadiest agencies in NY. Not to mention clueless leadership. Their central planners are not in the system, and it shows.

Beth Tarduno: OMG. Is this even legal???

Virginia Borden Maier (Author) : Beth Tarduno A judge would have to decide if they are appropriately applying the transparency laws. I think not of course, and that it is better for the public good if information is more free. And I think this is clearly a case of "we just don't want to reveal any of our information, because we will be criticized"


Well almost, one STCC group member showed some caution, after actually READING the material, and noted the words "critical infrastructure"

Joanne Heckmann: "Critical infrastructure" is DHS terminology. Before making assumptions about NYPA or NYSCC, it could be that they are being directed by DHS to not disclose this information.

That was met with this statement from Ms. Maier, who took exception to Ms Heckmann's refusal to believe what was stated.

Virginia Borden Maier (Author) : Joanne Heckmann they are not being directed by DHS, this is selective application of laws about transparency. If it was truly critical, they should not have included unredacted maps and photos of the site. What they did not include was just the engineers descriptions of the conditions before they applied the repair.

So according to Ms. Maier the Department of Homeland Security has "nothing" to do with her FOIL request, this was simply the Canal Corporation worried they would be "criticized" for sharing those redactions, and what they stated.

Nothing could be further from the truth, or the actual facts.

It took one search on the internet to find that truth. The fact is that the Erie Canal System is part of the Inland Waterway System of this Country,  and as such does actually fall under jurisdiction of the US Department of Homeland Security. That's done through two agencies involved with the Erie Canal, the US Coast Guard & FEMA.

But it appears that Ms Maier only believes in her "own truth" once again, and even Joanne Heckmann's words of wisdom will not change that.


It all falls under the category of "Maritime or Port Security", like Fairport, Brockport, or Port Byron.




https://www.dhs.gov/topics/secretary-homeland-security#:~:text=Under%20the%20Secretary's%20leadership%2C%20DHS,critical%20infrastructure%2C%20cybersecurity%2C%20detection%20of


And even Canal Lift Bridge Operation & Repair falls under DHS & Coast Guard jurisdiction as seen by this recent document filed with the US Government. Here's a copy of a Erie Canal Lift Bridge repair that was registered with DHS and the US Coast Guard, in the US Federal Registry





https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2022/07/18/2022-15233/drawbridge-operation-regulation-erie-canal-part-of-the-new-york-state-canal-system-in-albion-ny

Here's another DHS / Coast Guard related announcement about the Erie Canal:

https://www.regulations.gov/document/USCG-2017-0385-0001



Once again it's now become rather obvious that whatever Ms Maier may "believe" about the NYS Canal Corporation (or the Erie Canal system), her thoughts & beliefs rarely (if ever) are actually supported by actual facts.

She cares very little about the truth, choosing to deceive her group with her "I Think & I Believe" statements that only support her agenda of disinformation, deception & distraction.

Of course any real truth about Canal Safety & Integrity will always be buried under this group's blind ambition.

Remember, "shade is cool" , the group's slogan.

They prefer a shady walk for a few Fairport residents than for overall Erie Canal Safety for it's neighbors. It's hard to have both safety and shade when the dams are covered with invasive vegetation, and the majority of the Erie Canal runs West to East.

The members seem to exist merely to stroke Ms Maier's ego, and make themselves "feel good" by tearing down the Canal Corporation for just trying to do their job, and keep New Yorkers safe from an aging, deteriorating canal system, and keep the NYS Canal System in compliance with State & Federal requirements.


The video below explains more about the US Inland Waterway System, which includes our own NYS Erie Canal

https://youtu.be/rxHIk5ARHLI



So there you have it. I welcome anyone to comment and try to dispute what's written here, and the facts that have been shared. It appears now, that this STCC Facebook group is no better than any of the other "conspiracy groups" we see today.

Those other groups spend their time disputing election results, they claim Donald Trump is the "savior of the country" and Democrats are running "child-stealing pizzerias".

Doesn't it seem that Ms Maier and her group fit in nicely with their own "personal truth" about Erie Canal safety & how it should be managed?


« Last Edit: September 26, 2022, 05:02:29 pm by Doug K »