Stunning Video Shows Low Hinckley Water Level; Officials Say State Is At Fault
The New York State Canal Corporation, and a lack of rain recently, are to blame for the severely low water levels at Hinckley Reservoir.That's the word from Pat Becher, executive director of the Mohawk Valley Water Authority.
This video was posted on Friday on the Hinckley Lake facebook page (the lake and reservoir are one and the same), showing many grounded boats and depleted water levels. It's costing those who use the water body for recreation not only their enjoyment of the reservoir, but also hundreds of dollars in some cases to have their boats towed and repaired.
State officials recently released 200,000 million gallons from the reservoir each day, more than two and half times then normal, Becher said on Monday's First News with Keeler in the Morning on WIBX. This was done, he says, because of a contractual obligation regulating water flows to Erie Boulevard Hydropower. However, considering the area's lack of rain recently, this regulation of the water flows should have been postponed until some new precipitation came.
Some, including New York State Assemblyman Marc Butler, have raised concerns about water levels, not only for those who use the reservoir recreationally, but also for general water use if a tenant is found for the Marcy Nanocenter site.
As he has reiterated before, Becher explains why there is more than enough water for everyone. But, he says there has to be better communication between the Canal Corporation and local officials. The reservoir's capacity is able to meet the needs of water customers, Nano and boaters, Becher said.
''Everything we need is available at Hinckley, it's really dependent on how much you let out. It's careful management of the reservoir that's key,'' he said.
In the meantime, the state Canal Corporation will draw less from the reservoir in the short term to help keep water levels stable, he said.