The International Joint Commission has appointed a Montreal councilwoman to the board responsible for setting outflows from Lake Ontario.
The International Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River Board, consisting of over a dozen U.S. and Canadian appointees, sets the rates of outflows from the Moses-Saunders Power Dam. The IJC announced Thursday Suzie Miron, a city councillor from a neighborhood in northeast Montreal, will be the newest member on the board. The board is split almost evenly between U.S. and Canadian members.
Last month, the IJC appointed Greece Town Supervisor Bill Reilich, a vocal critic of the IJC, to the board.
Local activists, politicians and residents often accuse the IJC of prioritizing the interests of Montreal and down-river communities over Lake Ontario shoreline residents. From April 14 to late May, the board reduced outflows to mitigate flooding that caused thousands of evacuations in the Montreal area. Over that same period, the lake level rose by about two feet. The lake level eventually hit a record high of over 249 feet in early June..
The IJC has maintained that it has sought to balance the negative effects of high water across all shoreline residents. The board kept outflows at record highs from June 13 to Aug. 20 to alleviate flooding along the lakeshore.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Friday recorded the lake level at 246.46 feet and predicted another seven-inch drop by Nov. 4.
The board forecasts a 5 percent chance the lake will hit a seasonal high of at least 247.5 feet by April 1, 2020 and a 50 percent chance the lake will be over 246 feet by April 1.