The Sacandaga Protection Committee (SPC), composed of community leaders, lake users, permit holders and area property taxpayers, was formed in 2009 to develop strategies to protect the environmental, economic and legal interests of the entire lake. After being faced with catastrophic proposed changes by the Hudson River- Black River Regulating District (HRBRRD) and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), area residents revolted and demonstrated they were a force to be reckoned with. Those proposals would have made the Great Sacandaga Lake shoreline into a 129-mile public beach with no provision for law enforcement, litter, sanitation control or parking. They would have banned fireplaces, picnic tables and mowing, among other prohibitions. The destruction in property values would have shifted a significant amount of the property tax burden to properties far from the lake. These proposals were submitted to the Governor’s Office of Regulatory Reform without any discussion or input from the community.
But your efforts helped put the proposal on the back burner–for now. However, the DEC has made it clear that the administration still considers the shoreline NYS forest preserve land and that it will revisit this issue in the future. Since then, other issues have become evident, such as the ongoing Federal Energy Regulatory Commission settlement hearings that will alter downstream beneficiary payments to support the HRBRRD. The SPC was born out of the eye-opening controversy caused by these events. One of the goals of the SPC is to ensure that any proposed changes to the rules and regulations, or any other major lake issue, take all factors into account and that the community has a seat at the negotiating table.
We need to be prepared to face any challenge to the way of life cherished by this wonderful community for more than 75 years and ensure that the three-county area does not suffer a reduction in tax base available to support needed services to the region.
Through a number of strategy sessions that included interested parties from all around the Great Sacandaga Lake, the SPC formed four subcommittees. Their responsibilities are:
1. Executive – to devise strategies & actions to protect the lake community.
2. Judicial – to obtain legal counsel and assist with legislative action
3. Funding – to assist in financial contributions that will enable the SPC to meet its goals.
4. Fiscal Oversight – to insure proper use of all funds received and to approve invoices before payment.
The SPC is a registered 501(c)(4) non-profit corporation.