Author Topic: Looks like the STCC's game is over in the Battle for the Erie Canal  (Read 53 times)

Doug K

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After months and months of discussions between the NY Canal Corporation (NYCC), the Facebook group known as Stop the Clear Cut (STCC) & the Erie Canal Neighbor's Association (ECNA) it appears the "Battle for the Erie Canal" is just about over. This will hopefully clear the way for all Erie Canal neighbors to have their Embankment Dams sections cleared of large woody vegetation that has continued to erode the safety of the waterway within the Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor. It's been an interesting lesson in human nature & resistance to change.

The STCC Group, after posting a private meeting event on Facebook that was planned to disrupt the NYCC Public Meetings, was looking for a dozen to 15 STCC members to attend each of the two Restoration Phase meetings, held this week on the Westside of Rochester. What they got from their group membership, which has fizzled over recent months, should be awake up call for the group... if not, oh well. It appeared a total of about 5-6 people from the STCC group represented at BOTH meetings. About 50% of that was "STCC management", which spoke but was not greeted with the same "enthusiasm" as when they first started their fight to save "trees on dams".

No "Down with NYCC" picket signs... No shouting & disrupting the meeting... No open denial of the proven facts about this project.

Their message of "Trees are OK on Dams" has grown as tired as the NY Canal Corporation has become waiting for these folks to simply understand the Embankment Restoration Project is really all about Safety. Their leaders actually have used the word "Dam" to describe the Earthen Embankments as of late.. a real step forward for these folks. Hopefully this STCC Group will start to engage their community on a more positive note going forward, maybe taking an active role in helping to plan the Embankment Restoration Plans for the east side Towns & Villages.

It would be nice to see the STCC change is name from Stop the Clear Cut to Support the Canal Corp, but that might be a stretch.

Through the past year, both the NY Canal Corp & the ECNA have waged a campaign of truth and transparency, placing public safety at the forefront of this Erie Canal Project, as it should be. Both organizations have shared the science & facts of Embankment Dams with the public and have shown repeatedly how Federal & State Regulations & Guidelines are driving this safety project forward. Those efforts have worked to educated the public, and adjacent property owners affected by the Embankment transformation, to the point where most, if not all westside homeowners now understand why the project was necessary, and also what "safer embankments" are supposed to look like.

The NY Canal Corporation has stood by it's safety message from Day 1, they have been vindicated by the NY State Dept of Environmental Conservation on their SEQR Assessment (which overruled a Court Injunction) and they tolerated a steady campaign of lies & deceit against their much needed Erie Canal work from the STCC. Maybe most importantly the Canal Corporation promised to restore the privacy of their affected "neighbors" which is the heart of their Restoration Phase work and was discussed in most recent public meetings. And through it all the ECNA has understood the facts & stood shoulder to shoulder with the NYCC.

It looks like this may be the FINAL score after the Erie Canal Trail dust settles:

For those who have not seen the ECNA satire on the Battle for the Erie Canal...enjoy.

Michael Caswell

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« Last Edit: March 07, 2019, 04:52:44 am by Michael Caswell »