Canal clearing lawsuit: Judge rules in favor of towns
Pittsford, N.Y. – Pittsford Town Supervisor William Smith says a State Supreme Court judge has ruled in favor of the towns of Pittsford, Perinton and Brighton in a lawsuit concerning a controversial brush-clearing project along the Erie Canal.
In a social media post Thursday, Smith said the judge found in the town’s favor, ruling that the New York State Canal Corporation and State Power Authority improperly classified its embankment maintenance project, saying an environmental review of the project was mandated by law.
The maintenance project called for trees and other shrubbery to be removed from certain areas along the Erie Canal to protect the strength of canal embankments. In January, the Canal Corporation announced it would focus on just clearing dead trees and underbrush in an effort to identify any current weaknesses.
Last month, the three towns filed a lawsuit, calling for an immediate halt to tree cutting along the canal.
Smith said the injunction on cutting trees will continue pending the Canal Corporation and Power Authority complying with the State Environmental Quality Review Act.
This is a developing story. 13WHAM will provide updates as they become available.