Moriah, Port Henry to study waterfront facilities

PORT HENRY - Lake Champlain may be Moriah's greatest asset. But are local municipalities taking full advantage of the lake?

That's a question the town of Moriah and village of Port Henry hope to get answered by an independent, professional study.

The town and village are working with the Essex County/Lake Placid Visitors Bureau to investigate the impact of the village-owned Port Henry beach and town-owned Bulwagga Bay camp site. Both offer camping, swimming and day use. A company is now being sought to conduct the study.

"This is an opportunity to take full advantage of our greatest asset, the lake," Moriah trustee Tim Garrison said at the June town board meeting. "This won't happen overnight. It's going to take some time."

Garrison noted the joint venture splits the cost of the study between the town and village and will, hopefully, make future projects eligible for shared-services grants.

Supervisor Tom Scozzafava stressed nothing will change at the town-owned Bulwagga Bay campsite in the immediate future.

After a study is complete, Scozzafava said, public meetings will be held to get resident comments on the two lakefront facilities.

Bulwagga Bay attracts about 120 seasonal campers each summer along with overnight guests. It's a major source of revenue for the town, trustee Paul Salerno said.

"The (Port Henry) village board and the mayor wanting to do this with the town is a huge step forward," Scozzafava said. "That lakefront is the biggest asset this community has. Hopefully, when all is said and done, we'll have a clear direction how to proceed and take full advantage of the lake."

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