US Army Corps of Engineers
Buffalo District Website Website

Water Level Info

Up to date water level information can be found here.

Lake Ontario High Water

Great Lakes High Water USACE- Buffalo District Permit Guidance

New York State:

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Buffalo District, in cooperation with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and New York State Department of State (DOS) have issued guidance regarding permits available for the purpose of shore protection to safeguard existing functional erosion control structures, roads, bridges, infrastructure, and property along  the shorelines of Lake Erie, Lake Ontario, Niagara River and Saint Lawrence River including affected portions of associated bays and tributaries.

On May 8, 2020, the DEC issued a NEW General Permit (GP-0-20-004) for the purposes of shore protection to safeguard existing functional erosion control structures, roads, bridges, infrastructure, and property along the shorelines of Lake Erie, Lake Ontario, Niagara River, St. Lawrence River and associated embayments and tributaries.  The new GP is similar to the prior GPs GP-0-17-006, GP-0-18-002 and GP-0-19-003. The GP-0-20-004 expires on May 7, 2025.

Details of the GP and instructions for applicants can be found at: https://www.dec.ny.gov/permits/120369.html

Projects that qualify for the General Permits will also qualify for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)

Nationwide Permit (NWP) No. 3, 13, and/or 19 and have received Coastal Consistency Certification from the New York State Department of State (DOS), except as noted below.

All GP applications must be submitted to the DEC who will determine if the GP applies. If the GP applies, no coordination with the USACE or DOS is required except for the following circumstances, as certain activities may require USACE pre-construction notification or approval under the Federal Endangered Species Act.

Before starting work, contact the USACE by sending a copy of the GP application package to: LRB.NewYork.RegActions@usace.army.mil for approval for any project that involves the following activities:

a.) Tree removal in: all Towns in Jefferson County; in the Towns of Sandy Creek and Richland, Oswego County; and in the Towns of Hammond, Morristown and Oswegatchie, St. Lawrence County.

b.) Activities in federally-regulated wetlands in the Towns of Huron and Wolcott, Wayne County.

c.) Activities in federally-regulated wetlands in Cayuga and Oswego Counties.

d.) Activities within sandy shorelines in the Towns of Sandy Creek and Richland, Oswego County.

e.) Activities within federally-regulated wetlands or sandy shorelines in the Towns of Henderson and Ellisburg, Jefferson County.

f.) Projects that involve the placement of stone below the mean high water line in excess of an average of one cubic yard per running foot of shoreline. Note for 1(f): The GP application package must also be sent to the NYS DOS along with a Federal Coastal Assessment Form for concurrence.

To ensure permit compliance, please review the terms and conditions of the USACE Nationwide Permits 3, 13 & 19, which contains updated DEC Water Quality Certification and DOS Coastal Consistency information for use with the GP.  It can be accessed HERE

NOTE: Projects that subsequently receive a DEC “STANDARD ACTIVITY PERMIT SAP-0-19-001: 2017-2018 LAKE ONTARIO/ST LAWRENCE RIVER FLOODING”, which allows for completion of projects that previously received a DEC GP but expired before completion of the authorized work, will continue to qualify for Nationwide Permit (NWP) No. 3, 13, and/or 19 and do not require additional review by USACE or DOS.

Projects not qualifying for the GP

If your project does not qualify for the GP a Joint Application for permit and Federal Coastal Assessment Form must be submitted to DEC, USACE, and DOS. The permit application forms can be found at: https://www.lrb.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/New-York-Permit-Information/  and

https://www.dos.ny.gov/opd/programs/consistency/instructions.html

Lake Ontario High Water Level Information

Under Public Law 84-99, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers may provide assistance for flood response activities, to save lives and protect improved property (i.e. public facilities/services and residential/commercial developments) during or following a flood or coastal storm. All assistance is supplemented through local and State governmental authorities.

Direct Assistance may be provided in the form of government-furnished materials, to include empty sandbags and plastic sheeting, upon state request.  Technical assistance be provided in the form of critical engineering advice and solutions, to include the following:

  • Providing experienced personnel to give guidance on flood fight techniques and emergency construction methods.
  • Providing personnel to inspect existing flood protection projects and/or structurally threatened dams to identify problem areas and recommend corrective actions.
  • Providing hydraulic or hydrologic analysis, geotechnical evaluations, topography and stream data, maps, and historic or storm information. 

Prior to calling the Corps of Engineers for assistance, homeowners should first contact their town, county, and state officials to report concerns.

Buffalo District is committed to ensuring public safety while providing technical expertise and assistance to communities along the shoreline to supplement the State’s coordinated emergency response efforts,” said said Lt. Col. Jason Toth, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Buffalo District commander.  “Currently our District Emergency Management office continues coordination with local and state emergency management offices to ensure the Corps of Engineers is doing our part to make as many resources available when requested.”
 

Photos from the field - stay tuned as this will be updated soon

May 1, 2019 - Press Release - Corps of Engineers ready to respond to rising water levels

May 6, 2019 - Press Release - USACE deploys technical team to Lake Ontario shoreline

For questions regarding Plan 2014 please contact:
Frank Bevacqua, IJC Public Affairs
Telephone: 202-736-9024        
Cell: 202-412-1017

bevacquaf@Washington.IJC.org 

USACE Public Affairs, Andrew Kornacki
716-879-4349
andrew.a.kornacki@usace.army.mil