Jefferson County, NY Urging Control of Aquatic Invasive Species
Status: Adopted on 8/7/07
Source File: http://www.co.jefferson.ny.us/pdfs/aug07bd.pdf
Resolution No. 161
Urging the Federal Government to Pass Legislation to Control the Introduction of Aquatic Invasive Species
Whereas, The Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River have been subjected to at least 183 aquatic invasive species introductions with several of these spreading to other regions, and continued introduction of aquatic invasive species are causing irreversible ecological damage and contributing to severe economic loss throughout the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River, and
Whereas, Aquatic invasive species such as round gobies and zebra mussels and diseases such species may carry have already had a significant negative economic impact on commercial and recreational fishing activity and municipal infrastructure, and
Whereas, Said diseases may include the VHS virus, which appears to have a negative effect on the Muskelunge population, one of the area’s most popular sport fishes, and botulism, recent outbreaks of which have killed many fishes and water birds locally, and
Whereas, Jefferson County gains little, if any, advantage from the commercial traffic on the St. Lawrence Seaway, yet the preservation of the St. Lawrence River is vital to its tourism economy and sport fisheries, and
Whereas, Ballast water from vessels entering the Great Lakes from the Atlantic Ocean are the number one source of new aquatic invasive species entering the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River, and current ballast water regulations have proven ineffective inasmuch as the rate of aquatic invasive species introductions has not slowed, and
Whereas, Federal governments have been slow to take decisive legislative or regulatory action and to provide the necessary funding to deal with this issue in a comprehensive and effective way, despite broad consensus in the Great Lakes region that such action and funding is needed.
Now, Therefore, Be It Resolved, That the Jefferson County Board of Legislators supports the immediate passage of comprehensive federal legislation to prevent the introduction of aquatic invasive species, with special emphasis on ballast water regulations, such as in Title V of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2007 (HR 2830), with the proviso that the implementation date of such legislation be no later than 2012.