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Niagara County extends lakeshore state of emergency

Niagara County's emergency declaration for its four towns along Lake Ontario, which was to have expired Saturday, has been extended for another 30 days.

County crews have piled sandbags and built berms in the areas most vulnerable to flooding, according to Jonathan F. Schultz, the county's emergency management director.

The International Joint Commission has been increasing outflows from the lake in recent days, but County Legislator David E. Godfrey said it's clear that waters will take weeks to return to seasonal norms, so flooding and erosion may continue.

Legislator John Syracuse said a lot of debris has washed onto the shores, and urged boaters to use caution.

"There are still a lot of folks coming out, but we’ve seen a significant drop over comparable periods last year – and that really hurts the economies of little communities like Olcott, Wilson, Oak Orchard, and so on," Syracuse said.

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