Cayuga County homes just feet away from falling into Lake Ontario

From her front porch in Sterling, Kathy Dillon has a million dollar view but right underneath she also has an expensive problem. The shoreline of Lake Ontario is eroding and Dillon is losing two to three feet from her yard each year. Right now, she only has two or three feet of space between her deck and a cliff looking over the beach below.

"We're just racing the clock at this point," said Dillon.

She believes her porch might have to be removed next summer.

"We're trying to hold back as best we can but it's not looking good at the moment," said Dillon.

Several homes on Ontario Shores Drive in Sterling are just feet from the edge of a cliff. Over the past year, The Cayuga County Soil and Water Conservation District has installed erosion control measures over 266 feet of shoreline that hold back the soil and allow drainage. Executive Director Doug Kierst says they need grant money to move on to the next stage that would protect Kathy Dillon's home and others nearby.

"We did apply for some funds last year and we are waiting back to hear back for official word and feedback if we received them or not," said Kierst.

Dillon and her neighbor Steve Imburgia have been putting in plants with strong root structures and are looking at erosion control mesh. The neighbors are just trying to buy some time and hoping the grants come through to extend what's working up the street.

"It is just a matter of sooner rather than later because we are running out of time," said Imburgia.

A multimillion dollar project is underway to install a water line to the Ontario Shores Drive neighborhood. Imburgia and other homeowners hope their property will still be there when the water line is completed.

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