Cazenovia village board raises lake access fee

As part of an effort to fund increased boat inspections, the village board Monday passed a resolution raising the annual cost of a permit for out-of-town permits for Lakeside Park boat access. The new cost adds a $35 environmental impact fee to a base $40 cost.

"There are some new invasive species that are now invading New York state that are worse than Eurasian milfoil," said Village Trustee Kurt Wheeler. "There's no perfect system, but we just feel that if we don't do everything that's in our power to prevent the introduction of those new invasive species -- the lake is too important a resource to ignore. "

The move to a 100 percent inspection policy is paired with an effort by the town and village move forward on the application of the herbicide Renovate to control the increasing weed problem. At a village board meeting last month, Trustee Russ Brownback said that the public could not justify such a large investment in the treatment of weeds if strong measures were not being taken to prevent the introduction of new species.

"The entire community is putting an enormous investment in the health of the lake, so people who come and use the lake making a small investment is reasonable," Wheeler said Monday.

A uniformed Morris Protective Services guard will perform inspections during weekends, holidays, and peak weekday hours during the May 2 to September 7 season. Locally hired and trained village employees and volunteer inspectors will fill the remaining hours.

After Labor Day, lake access hours will be as posted and by appointment.

Accounting for the raised fee and slightly fewer applicants, the new plan for inspection left a gap of about $2,200. At Monday's meeting, Trustee Thomas Tait said that, according to Cazenovia Lake Association president Preston Gilbert, an anonymous donor had offered to provide that money.

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