Legislation will allow Sand Lake, Rensselaer County to benefit from economic and recreational improvements


Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin (R,C,I-Melrose) is proud to announce that his legislation to benefit Sand Lake and Rensselaer County, Assembly Bill A.4579, passed the Assembly earlier today, 109-2. The legislation, which previously passed in the Senate, amends the State’s Executive Law to include Wynantskill Creek in the definition of “inland waterways” for the purpose of waterfront revitalization and inclusion within the State’s Coastal and Inland Waterways program. This legislation has the potential to bring significant positive economic impact to Sand Lake and Rensselaer County. 

Designation as an “inland waterway” is critically important as it allows local communities along the waterway to be eligible to participate in New York’s Coastal and Inland Waterways Program. The grant program is funded through the Environmental Protection Fund, and helps to aid local communities as they work to develop and implement local waterfront revitalization programs that will maximize the use of the waterfront.

“I am honored to announce that this immensely positive legislation was passed earlier today. This legislation will bring economic and recreational opportunities to Sand Lake and surrounding communities,” said McLaughlin. “I am confident that with the hard work and dedication of local leaders we will, in the near future, have both a tremendous recreational and educational resource in the Wynantskill Creek.”

The Town of Sand Lake requested this legislation after unanimously passing a local resolution on December 12 of last year calling for the Wynantskill Creek to receive the distinction as an inland waterway.

 “This legislation will vastly improve what is already a beautiful and well-known source of pride for our local communities. I was pleased to work with state Senator Kathy Marchione and Sand Lake Town Supervisor Flora Fasoldt to pass this legislation.”

 “It is terrific news that legislation allowing Wynantskill Creek’s inclusion within New York’s Coastal and Inland Waterway program passed the Assembly during its Session today, thanks to the hard work, dedication and vigilance of my friend and colleague, Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin, who tirelessly championed the measure. Our legislation will help promote new opportunities for responsible local waterfront revitalization for communities located along Wynantskill Creek. I was pleased to sponsor this bill in the State Senate and partner with Assemblyman McLaughlin on this initiative which we are hopeful will be signed into law,” Senator Kathleen Marchione (R,C-Halfmoon) said.

Sand Lake Town Supervisor Flora Fasoldt credited the Town’s Planning and Economic Development Committee with seeking State Legislation to designate the Wynantskill Creek as an inland waterway. “This designation will provide significant quality of life and economic opportunities to our Town.  SandLake will now be eligible for grant funding for a broad range of projects. This initiative can be invaluable in enhancing and revitalizing areas along the creek and in fostering beneficial use of this waterway,” said Fasoldt.

Located in Rensselaer County, Wynantskill Creek feeds into the Hudson River, which is already defined as an inland waterway. Wynantskill Creek is of great historical importance, as it provided the water power that fueled the Industrial Revolution and served mills dating back to the Manor of Rensselaerwyck, as well as the ironworks that provided the plate for the Civil War ironclad ship, the Monitor.

In its picturesque 14-mile course from its headwaters at Crooked Lake, Wynantskill Creek drains Glass Lake, the three Burden Lakes, Crystal Lake, Reichard’s Lake, Snyder’s Lake and Burden Pond, passing through the towns of Sand Lake and North Greenbush, and descending over several waterfalls through the City of Troy to the Hudson River.

One half mile is devoted to a footpath with public fishing rights, offering wild brook trout and brown trout stocked by the Department of Environmental Conservation, while many more miles remain undeveloped, presenting significant potential for increased public access and passive recreational use. 

Assemblyman McLaughlin represents the 107th district, which consists of parts of Rensselaer, Columbia and Washington counties. For more information, please visit Assemblyman McLaughlin’s official website.


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