New York Power Authority Trustees Approve Land
Transfers to St. Lawrence County Towns
(315) 764-0226, ext. 300
July 24, 2001
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MASSENANew York Power Authority Trustees Tuesday approved the formal transfer of
nearly 800 acres of land from the St. Lawrence-Franklin D.
Roosevelt Power Project to Massena, Louisville, Waddington and Lisbon to fulfill a
long-standing commitment and get the land back into productive, tax-paying use.
"When Governor Pataki was here in May to announce the plan to return this land, he
said that we were making good on a promise that the Cuomo administration had failed to
keep 10 years ago," said Joseph J. Seymour, chairman and chief executive officer of
the Power Authority. "Now, I am pleased to say, the deal is done. The Power Authority
trustees have formally voted to turn over 800 acres of land to the towns for use as they
determine is best."
Seymour said that the trustees approved the transfer of 670.4 acres to the Town of
Waddington; 66.8 acres to the town of Massena; 40.4 acres to the Town of Louisville; and
four acres to the Town of Lisbon. They acted during a meeting today at the St.
Lawrence-Franklin D. Roosevelt Power Project in Massena. Actual deeds will be transferred
when environmental assessments, requested by the towns, are completed.
"We have been working very hard to resolve a number of issues with our neighbors
in the North Country and this is a good example of that hard work paying off," said
"Today's announcement makes good on an unfulfilled promise made to
the people of the North Country more than 10 years ago. By transforming this land, the
Governor has once again demonstrated his commitment to working to address the concerns of
North Country residents as the relicensing of the St. Lawrence-FDR Power Project moves
forward," said U.S. Representative John McHugh. "Much remains to be done, but
this is just another example of the progress that has been made in recent months."
"The goal of the land transfer was to place excess land under local control where
it can best be utilized for the benefit of the local communities," said State Senator
Jim Wright, "The completion of the transfer, as proposed by Governor Pataki is being
"This land transfer is a long time coming. It is an important step toward
returning the land to a state that will prove productive to the businesses and citizens of
St. Lawrence County. I commend Governor Pataki and the New York Power Authority for making
good on the promise made to the citizens of New York State," said State Senator Ray
"The formal land transfer fulfills Governor Patakis promise to return this
valuable acreage back to our community," said Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava.
"This is a significant community enhancement because it returns municipal control
over the lands, which will be used for important projects. I look forward to working with
town officials and the public to produce a sensible usage plan for this land."
Jack Sauve, supervisor of the Town of Massena, said "I want to thank Governor
Pataki, Chairman Seymour and the Board of Trustees, the State agencies and my local
government task force colleagues for their hard work in making the return of this land a
reality. This is another major hurdle cleared in putting land back into productive uses
and creating jobs and opportunities in our local communities."
Town of Louisville Supervisor Larry Legault said, "I recognize that the return of
this land would not have been possible without the willingness of the Governor, the
trustees and all the parties to come together, work hard and find sensible solutions to
some very difficult issues. Our success in placing this land back into the local tax base
demonstrates that there can be a balance between environmental concerns and economic
Roger Watters, Lisbon's supervisor, said, "I am very pleased and want to thank
Governor Pataki and the Board of Trustees for today's action to close out the remaining
details to transfer this first group of parcels to our local communities. I also look
forward to similar success in resolving all the outstanding issues that will result in the
Town of Lisbon being removed from the project boundary."
Reggie Greene, Supervisor of the Town of Waddington, said, "There were times I was
sure this land would never be returned to the towns. So I am especially pleased with the
action taken here today by the board of trustees. Again, I want to thank everyone from the
Governor on down for working together and making this possible. The potential for
development and use of these parcels provides a tremendous opportunity for the residents
of the Town of Waddington."
The Mayor of the Village of Waddington, Elizabeth Phillips, said, "Making the
North Country a better place to live and work is what this is all about. And the return of
this land provides the local communities with a valuable tool to do just that. I want to
thank Governor Pataki, Chairman Seymour and all those involved for sitting down and
listening to our concerns and working with us to make this possible today."
Ken McDonnell, Mayor of the Village of Massena, said, "With the help of Governor
Pataki and the Power Authority, we are taking another step toward rebuilding the tax base
of our communities and demonstrating that by working cooperatively, we can accomplish many
The land was acquired by the Power Authority in the mid-1950s for the creation of the
St. Lawrence-Franklin D. Roosevelt Power Project. In 1991, during the Cuomo
administration, about 840 acres were identified as not needed for project operations or
for environmental or recreational purposes. The Power Authority received permission from
the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to remove the property from the project
boundaries, but prior to today, only 54 acres were turned over to the Town of Louisville.