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Schumer says IJC ‘screwed it up’ with lake-level plan

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 10 October 2017 at 10:56 am

Photo by Tom Rivers: U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer was at Bald Eagle Marina in Kendall on Monday to discuss a plan for federal funds to improve fish habitat and improve infrastructure in the Great Lakes. He addressed other topics, including the high lake levels that have caused extensive damage to the shoreline this year.

KENDALL – U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer said the International Joint Commission, the bi-national organization in charge of regulating the levels of the Great Lakes, needs a new plan.

“We have to do something,” Schumer said in Kendall on Monday, speaking at the Bald Eagle Marina. “They screwed it up.”

Schumer said the IJC is working on a new plan for the lake levels. Plan 2014 took effect for the first time this year and there has been widespread damage on the southshore. There was record rainfall this spring to contribute to the high waters.

Schumer was in town on Monday to discuss the Great Lakes Aquatic Connectivity and Infrastructure Program Act. The proposed bill supports infrastructure updates that will improve Great Lakes fisheries and restore habitats.

Schumer, the Senate Minority Leader, took other questions from reporters. He said there is widespread support in Congress to ban “bump stocks,” which were used last week by the Las Vegas shooter to increase the rate of bullets fired on a crowd attending a country music concert. Schumer expects legislation to ban bump stocks to pass soon in the Senate.

Schumer also expects there will be resolution to keep the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, the young immigrants known as “Dreamers.”

Schumer said the estimated 800,000 young immigrants, including many in Western New York, should be able to stay unless they have a criminal record. Schumer said the overwhelming majority of young immigrants in DACA contribute in many positive ways to their communities.

Schumer would like to see a broader immigration overhaul, including a better system for allowing legal workers for agriculture. He said farms need more workers to pick apples and milk cows.

Schumer didn’t want to address the skirmish between President Donald Trump and Bob Corker, the Tennessee senator who claimed over the weekend that Trump is unfit for office. Trump said the Republican senator is a “fool.”

Schumer told reporters in Kendall that Corker is “a good man.” But Schumer he didn’t want to get into the back-and-forth of personal attacks. “I try to avoid the invective,” he said.

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