News Details - Sheriff Lansing Orders Closure of Cayuga Inlet
In response to today’s declaration by City of Ithaca Mayor Carolyn Peterson of an environmental emergency in the City of Ithaca due to the infestation of the invasive plant species Hydrilla in Cayuga Inlet, Tompkins County Sheriff Ken Lansing has responded to Mayor Peterson’s request and ordered closure of the Cayuga Inlet, effective immediately, to permit treatment of areas of infestation with herbicide.
All boat traffic in the Inlet is prohibited until further notice.
Sheriff Lansing’s written response to Mayor Peterson’s request states:
“Please accept this letter as recognition of your request that I close the Inlet in order to treat our Hydrilla infestation. As a result, I am ordering the closure to take effect immediately…I do not see any options other than closing the inlet in order to treat the affected areas as recommended by professionals in the field. While this occurs, I will be posting deputies in the inlet to ensure there is no boat traffic. It has been recognized that boat traffic could lead to further spread. As the time frame for this treatment is currently unknown, I am taking this action until further notice. If needed, deputies will ticket boaters who willfully disregard this order.
“I anticipate that this decision may cause dismay for those who rely on, or otherwise enjoy the use of Cayuga Lake,” Sheriff Lansing’s letter continues. “At this time, I am asking for everyone’s patience and understanding. If we do not take aggressive action towards reversing this problem now, our use of this great resource could be more severely diminished in the future.”
As part of the emergency declaration, issued today, Mayor Peterson states: “In light of the urgent nature of this situation and the threats posed by this Hydrilla infestation to the City’s economy, the natural environment, and the health, safety, and quality of life of its inhabitants, I am hereby declaring the existence of an environmental emergency in the City of Ithaca. I am hereby making a formal request for the Tompkins County Sheriff to close the Inlet until further notice, so that the affected areas can be treated with an appropriate herbicide.”
To read Mayor Peterson’s full Emergency Declaration, click HERE.