Montezuma works with Parks & Trails New York to improve Heritage Park

In 2011, the Town of Montezuma received word it had been selected by Parks & Trails, NY to receive technical assistance from staff through their Healthy Trails, Healthy People program. This program is aimed at helping New Yorkers develop more active communities with recreational, economic and quality of life benefits.

Read more at the Montezuma Historical Society’s blog:


Cayuga Naturally 2014 Photo Contest

The Sterling Nature Center is hosting Cayuga Naturally, their annual contest for nature photographs taken in Cayuga County.

Get out their with your camera and show us all what a beautiful place we get to call home!

Contest entries will be due October 7, 2014. Continue reading

Cycling the Erie Canal Bike Tour

Bicycle tour departingJuly 13-20, 2014
Buffalo to Albany

Have you noticed the all bicycles passing through Montezuma, Port Bryon, and Weedsport in previous Julys? Why not join them this year?

Riding the Canal TrailJoin people of all ages and from all over the country on July 13-20, 2014 for the 16th annual 8-day, 400-mile, Cycling the Erie Canal bike tour across New York State along the scenic and historic Erie Canal, named a National Heritage Corridor. Enjoy great scenery, interesting history, and unparalleled cycling. You’ll experience the canal and enjoy canal historians’ stories about the people, places and things that made life along the Erie Canal so unique in its day and so important to the history of New York State and the country.

The tour is scheduled to pass through Cayuga County on the morning of Wednesday, July 16. Ride along, or come wave from the trail side!

Find registration and everything you need to know online at:
Reduced registration price if you register by Sunday, June 1. Continue reading

Stakeholder Community Meeting for FEMA’s Risk MAP Finger Lakes, May 13 in Auburn

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) are hosting a community meeting here in Cayuga County to discuss and gather information about flood risks, floodplain management activities, and flood mitigation projects in our communities.

Risk MAP Discovery Community Meeting for Cayuga County
2:30 PM, Tuesday, May 13, 2014
Natural Resource Center, 7413 County House Road, Auburn, NY

If you know something about flooding in your community that FEMA does not know, we need to hear from you at this meeting.

This community meeting is part of a Risk MAP project to revise and update FEMA‘s activities for flood preparedness in the Finger Lakes Watershed. Risk MAP stands for “Risk Mapping, Assessment, and Planning” and is a nationwide FEMA initiative that includes a number of watershed-wide projects like this one. The area that FEMA is calling the Finger Lakes Watershed encompasses all of the land that eventually drains into the Seneca River, including the watersheds of individual lakes from Canandaigua Lake in the west to Onondaga Lake in the east. In Cayuga County, the watershed covers the great majority of the county, excepting only the Town of Sterling, portions of the Towns of Victory and Ira, and a small part of the Town of Summerhill.

One of the goals of this Risk MAP project is to create new digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) based on more up-to-date and accurate information of floodplains, flood flows, and flood risks in the watershed. FIRMs are used in the National Flood Insurance Program to determine which properties must have flood insurance and what insurance rates those properties will pay. FIRMs are also used as a tool for property owners and local officials to understand and prepare for flood risks in their communities. Cayuga County’s FIRMs were updated in 2007, but many of the FIRMs in the Finger Lakes have not been updated since the 1970s.

Another goal of this Risk MAP project is to identify other activities the FEMA can take on to reinforce the flood resiliency of communities in the Finger Lakes watershed. These other activities might include mitigation projects or support for planning, communication, and outreach.

Learn more about FEMA‘s Risk MAP program online at

The purpose of this community meeting is “Discovery,” that is, gathering information from individuals, communities, agencies, and organizations about flood risks, floodplain management, and mitigation projects. Particularly important will be identifying locations where the current FIRM is inaccurate or does not take into account the latest information. For example, a bridge replacement project might have improved flow and reduced flooding upstream of the bridge, but that has not been reflected in the FIRM‘s flood hazard zones. These may be areas where FEMA can conduct a detailed flood insurance study to update its predictions of flood hazard.

Before this Discovery meeting, FEMA and the DEC held a series of Pre-Discovery meetings online in March and also mailed out questionnaires to all of the Towns, Villages and Cities in the watershed. Meeting minutes and presentations from the Pre-Discovery meetings are available online at

If you plan on attending the Risk MAP Discovery Community Meeting, please confirm by email to

If you have any questions, please contact the DEC‘s Bureau of Flood Protection & Dam Safety at (518) 402-8185.

Online Survey for update of NYS Historic Preservation

The New York State Division for Historic Preservation is updating the state’s historic preservation plan. The previous plan was a five-year action plan for 2009-2013. Now is the time for a new action plan to provide a blueprint for strengthening and expanding preservation efforts across the Empire State.

The State Division for Historic Preservation is looking broadly for public input. Please help shape the plan by completing this brief survey:

If you have questions or want more information about the plan update and the survey, contact Amy Facca of the state historic preservation office by phone at (518) 237-8643 ext. 3109 or by email.

Robert Freeman, open government expert, to speak at Cayuga Community College tonight

Robert Freeman is coming to Cayuga Community College on Wednesday evening, December 11, to lead a discussion and forum on how the state Freedom of Information Law and Open Meetings Law keep our government open and effective.

When: 7 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Where: Irene Bisgrove Theatre, Cayuga Community College in Auburn
Free and open to the public!
Event flyer

Announcement in the Citizen

Understanding the laws around freedom of information and open meetings are essential for local boards and for citizens alike. The rules, and the principles, of open government apply to Town and Village Boards, school boards, planning boards, and any other public body.

Mr. Freeman is both an expert—he helped write New York State’s open government laws and is the executive director of the NYS Committee on Open Government—and an engaging speaker. This will be a great opportunity to learn more about open government in New York State.