Ulster County executive Mike Hein visited Phoenicia's Main Street yesterday afternoon, to discuss the county's response to the village's increasingly dire flood problems. Hein, who promised the county's support for the town of Shandaken in an application for permits to do emergency dredging in the Stony Clove, assured Phoenicians that he felt their pain:
I remember coming across that road and seeing the fish right where we stand. It's unacceptable. Every time there's a flood like that, it does incredible damage. But it does much more damage than just what it does to bricks and mortar. It does damage to the psyche of the people that live here, because it makes them feel they don't matter. It matters to me.
Thanks to Watershed Post contributor Claudia Fragnito, here's a video of Hein's press conference in front of Sweet Sue's.
Hein said the county Department of Public Works will provide operational support to the town of Shandaken during dredging. He said the support will include loaning the town equipment and the staff to operate it.
“The recent floods in Phoenicia have devastated homeowners, businesses and the infrastructure of Shandaken,” Hein said. “It is absolutely imperative that the DEC (state Department of Environmental Conservation) approves the emergency permit and allows dredging of the Stony Clove.