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Boaters, board face off in Irondequoit on new boating restrictions |

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Boaters, board face off in Irondequoit on new boating restrictions
Boaters, board face off in Irondequoit on new boating restrictions

It's going to be a great weekend for boaters, but next week, the boating rules could change on Lake Ontario along the Irondequoit shoreline.

Boaters say it's not fair. Homeowners say imagine hundreds of people in your yard, and boats just off the water. A man who lives on the beach said that people walk through his property to get on the boats.

The Irondequoit Town Board will vote Monday on a proposal that would make it illegal for boaters to tie off within 300 feet of the shoreline, between the West Pier and Lake Bluff.

Town Supervisor Mary Joyce D'Aurizio says this is not a new problem.

"My records show ten years of residents trying to seek resolution to trespassing issues, littering and problems that have been posed for them in their front yard," says D'Aurizio.

She says the proposed change is about more than just that. "The issue of public safety has become a very serious concern. When you've got swimmers swimming with boat props and its just the danger of boat rafting together if there should be a fire on one of those boats."

Boaters say the town's proposal goes too far.

"I believe that the land owner has rights, but the boaters also have rights, because the Great Lakes is a public thoroughfare," says Lake Ontario fisherman Michael Godert.

They say there is room for compromise.

"There are plenty of laws right now on the books that make this responsible for everybody. The landowners and the boaters. You don't get to pollute the lake, it's against the law," says boater Tracy Smith.

D'Aurizio says it's never going to be a win-win situation. "No one wins in this situation and that's the problem with legislation. Because a few people create a problem and everyone has to suffer for it."

The vote will be Monday. The Town Board meeting begins at 4 p.m., but there are some things on the agenda before this that will be discussed.

News10NBC is told some boaters do plan to file a lawsuit if the new changes are approved.

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