Lake Ontario sanctuary project endangered by proposed federal cuts

OSWEGO, NY — President Trump’s proposed federal budget cuts would jeopardized plans for a marine sanctuary planned for the shore of Lake Ontario. The cuts would take away more than $250 million from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, which is involved in helping marine life and maintaining coastal conditions.

The Lake Ontario project was just approved last week by NOAA, exciting many legislators in the Oswego area, including county administrator Phil Church.

Church says if the federal cuts are passed this sanctuary will “more than likely” be scrapped with them, wasting the hard work of all the people involved.

The southeast section of Lake Ontario is where Church hopes the sanctuary will eventually be located. He says this would be only second designated sanctuary for the Great Lakes.

The project could give a boost to Oswego and the surrounding area, Church said.

“Economically it would be a gradual rise of jobs for the people in this area, but also it would benefit the university, providing research opportunities they previously didn’t have,” Church said.

The Economic Development and Planning committee has already approved a resolution urging federal representatives to fight the proposed cuts. This resolution will hit the floor of the county legislature 7p.m., April 13. Church believes it will pass and is sending the resolution to other counties in the area, asking them to send it to Washington also.