Syracuse, NY— U.S. Rep. John Katko (NY-24) today announced Onondaga County Soil & Water Conservation District has received $50,000 in federal funds to protect drinking water in Onondaga County.
The funds are available through the U.S. Forest Service’s Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI), a program that provides federal investment for projects that ensure access to clean drinking water and protect Lake Ontario and the Great Lakes. In Central New York, the GLRI has been responsible for the implementation of water quality and restoration projects, including projects that have sought to mitigate Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) and monitor toxic substances in Lake Ontario. With this new award, the Onondaga County Soil & Water Conservation District will partner with lake associations to treat approximately 1,500 eastern hemlocks currently or potentially infested with hemlock woolly adelgid in the Skaneateles and Otisco Lake watersheds. These watersheds provide drinking water to 485,000 residents in Onondaga County.
“Today, I’m pleased to announce the Onondaga County Soil & Water Conservation District has received $50,000 through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) to combat invasive species in the Skaneateles and Otisco Lake watersheds. This important investment ensures the nearly half a million residents who rely on these watersheds have continued access to clean drinking water,” said Rep. Katko. “Since coming to Congress, protecting access to clean drinking water in Central New York has been among my top priorities. I’ve worked to robustly fund the GLRI, and will continue my work to expand the impact of programs that support water quality improvement in our region.”
Since coming to Congress, Rep. Katko has advocated for robust funding to expand the GLRI. In February, Rep. Katko voted in support of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) Act of 2019, bipartisan legislation he cosponsored to reauthorize funding for the GLRI.