Mayor warns that salmon fishing in Pulaski could be at risk if New York State doesn't pay for repairs
Tue, 04 Oct 2011 03:28:08 GMT —
Temperatures may be dropping but in Pulaski, this is peak tourist season. Fishermen from across the northeast have been lining both sides of the Salmon River every day from mid-September to mid-October.
Gerry Boucher and Dick Delisle arrived yesterday from Rhode Island and New Hampshire. They've been coming for twenty five years for Pulaski's main attraction.
"Where we're from, there's no salmon fishing in the northeast - so this is the place we go," said Boucher.
Out of state fishermen like Boucher and Delisle are big business in Pulaski.
"I believe we generate in the Town of Richland and Village of Pulaski, $2,000,000 in license fees. That doesn't count sales tax money," said Pulaski Mayor Karl Hax.
Hax wants to see some of that money to come back for improvements.
Last year flood waters washed away a retaining wall. It was a popular fishing spot but also protection for the riverbed. The state is providing a $500,000 grant to replace it but Hax also wants help with a sewer line that runs just under the river. It would cost another $300,000 to $400,000 to safely relocate it under the bridge but Hax says that's a small cost compared to closing down the river to fishermen if the sewer pipe breaks open.
"I think the state should take a hard look at how much money they generate in this area and how long they've generated that amount of money and how much into the future they'd like to generate this money," said Hax.
Hax added that the state needs to realize that many fishermen have been coming to Pulaski for decades but all that tourism is fishing based.
Jerry Boucher and Dick Delisle have three more days in Pulaski and they plan to spend them all in the water.
"If you want to catch salmon - this is the place you want to go," said Boucher.
Hax says the village can't afford the $300,000 to $400,000 thousand to relocate the sewer pipe on its own. He hopes the state will come through with the money before next spring when the retaining wall will be replaced.