Flooding leads to budget worries

"We don't have any control over the weather," Scozzafava said. "For the most part the campers have been very understanding, although some are upset and I understand that."

A one-month refund to seasonal campers for May would cost Moriah about $30,000.

Scozzafava has been in contact with the town insurance carrier to see if the community is covered for economic loss from flooding. If so, the town will consider a refund for campers unable to use the facility.

In the meantime, the town board has already decided to freeze rates at Bulwagga Bay for 2012 and 2013 as a way of making up the 2011 loss to seasonal campers.

"That won't make everyone happy, but it's the best we can do right now," Scozzafava said.

There is also the possibility some campers may decide not to pay for this season. Deposits have been paid, but the remainder of the seasonal camping fees are still outstanding.

There were some campers left at Bulwagga Bay during the winter that were damaged by the flooding this spring. The owners were notified when the lake started to rise and the town has no liability for those damages, the supervisor said.

Ultimately, the cost of flood repairs and any shortfall at Bulwagga Bay may end up on the backs of local taxpayers.

"I'm very concerned about it," Scozzafava said. "In all my years in office I've never been dealt this hand of cards."

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