SCHOHARIE COUNTY, N.Y. -- Some business and property owners in the Schoharie Valley are suing two New York City agencies over flood damage from Tropical Storm Irene.
The suit alleges that the Department of Environmental Protection and the New York Power Authority, could have limited the effects of Irene by lowering water levels at the Gilboa Dam and the nearby Blenheim-Gilboa hydroelectric plant.
Tensions have been high among residents of the area and the two agencies in recent years and the $115 million suit is the latest chapter.
Assemblyman Pete Lopez, who represents the area, says he understands the needs of agencies like the D-P and NYPA to provide for their customers, but says that shouldn't come at the expense of upstate residents.
“One would think and one would hope that in managing a facility, you have a routine, a regimen, a plan with backup features to guard against impacts including potential flooding,” Lopez said.
Lopez says he wants to see more proactive measures taken to deal with future disasters, including better notification for residents.