We had our first county-wide emergency management meeting of 2020 on Tuesday here in the village. Most of the lakefront towns were represented as was the county departments, NYSDOT and NYS Emergency Management. We all believe we need to begin even sooner this year since the water is so high. As a result, we will declare a State of Emergency on Monday, February 10th. This will allow teams to go on private property and assess the existing sandbag walls and break walls. This will provide the information needed to plan the number of sandbags required to protect the exposed areas to at least 250’. It is likely that several areas will be protected as high as 251’. In areas where we experienced significant waves in the past, we will use grain bags filled with sand as they were proven to work very well along Edgemere Drive in 2019.
When the existing bags are inspected we plan to take elevation measurements of every break wall and existing sandbag wall. This will allow for more accurate temporary flood barriers to be constructed. Nine pumps are being ordered from NYSDHSES (NYS Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services) and delivered to Wayne County Highway. That highway department will service each pump and load test them to ensure we have working pumps. As the water level exceeds 247, we will coordinate with the Sheriff Dive Team to place the plugs as we deploy the pumps. We have also requested that 20,000 sandbags that NYS has stored be brought to the village during the month of February. We will place them in one of the parking areas and cover them until teams are here to place them. NYS is also ramping up to begin to fill sandbags in prisons around the state this year. That will be more efficient than transporting the inmates to a location to do that work.
The USACE forecast on January 31 calls for only another inch rise during February. While I hope this is the case, they have been routinely wrong over the last several years. The current monthly forecast (January) shows a 5% chance of the water reaching 248.5, almost 7 inches lower than 2019. The feeling at our meeting was to hope for the best and plan for the worst.
The REDI projects are continuing to move forward. The Engineer’s Report for each project is due next Friday and each project is on track to make that date. These reports are lengthy and must address many factors whether they are relevant to the project or not. These reports are the vehicle to get the funding contracts in place with NYS.
We have been notified by the DEC that they will issue permits for both the Featherly Drive and Wickham Blvd revetment projects. We expect to get the Wickham Blvdpermit next week and the other at the end of a 30 day comment period that is underway. When we opened the bids for these projects, all of them exceeded our grant balance. The engineer has worked with the lowest bidder and some design changes that have reduced the cost some. Unfortunately, we have more work to do. I hope to have an update on this for our February Board Meeting on the 20th.
I will be out of the office beginning at noon on the 11th and returning on the 20th. Feel free to reach out to the village office or to Deputy Mayor Kallusch.