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West River & Connecticut River Advocacy Alert

Forum Posts: 60
Member Since:
October 10, 2006
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November 3, 2015 - 3:25 pm
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As paddlers, we have all been frustrated and angry about the cancellation of whitewater releases on the West River. Over the past two decades, we have lost all spring releases and fall releases have been cut down to a single day, depriving thousands of boaters opportunities to enjoy this great river and depriving the community of millions of dollars in economic benefits. The reasons for the elimination of these releases include the failed Atlantic Salmon restoration effort, but more generally, by a mischaracterization of the West River releases as harmful to the aquatic habitat despite any real evidence to support that view. Many in our community have worked to educate both the Corps of Engineers and the state and federal agencies over the years, and in the past year, the Corps has restored a 2-day fall release. We thank the Corps for that and appreciate the efforts of Julia Khorana with the AMC who has worked with the Corps for many years.

The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources is in the process of updating its Tactical Basin Plan for the West, Williams, Saxtons and the lower Connecticut River. This plan includes the West River below the Ball Mountain Dam in Jamaica as well as the Connecticut River below Bellows Falls. The draft basin plan says nothing about boating on either the West or Connecticut River or the importance of these resources to our community. We have an opportunity here to make our voices heard and I invite members of our community to join with me in attending public hearings scheduled for later this month or by submitting written comments. We are asking Vermont to recognize the value of whitewater boating on the West River in the tactical basin plan and to support efforts to restore the Connecticut River at Bellows Falls through the hydropower relicensing process. They need to hear from us.

Bob Nasdor
American Whitewater

Below is the meeting schedule:

November 10
6:00 – 8:30 PM
Chester Town Office
556 Elm St., Chester, VT

November 17
6:00 – 8:30 PM
Londonderry Town Office
100 Old School Street, South Londonderry, VT

November 23
6:00 – 8:30 PM
Newfane Town Office
555 Route 30, Newfane, VT

Here is a link to the plan:

Barnard, VT

Forum Posts: 18
Member Since:
May 17, 2009
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November 6, 2015 - 1:01 am
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Bob, I will try to make it to Chester!

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