The International Joint Commission’s (IJC) Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River Board will decrease to a six-member board with an equal number of members from the U.S. and Canada effective Dec. 1. The board sets the outflow from Lake Ontario in accordance with the provisions of an order of approval issued by the IJC in 2016. 

The re-structured board will continue to include one member each nominated by the governments of Canada and the U.S., the Province of Quebec, the Province of Ontario and the state of New York and will include one additional member on the U.S. side to ensure equal membership from both countries. Board members will continue to serve in their personal and professional capacity and consider interests of the entire Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River system.

The board’s online membership page will be updated when the change takes effect.

 

Due to high water events in recent years, IJC Commissioners initiated a thorough review of the board’s regulation plan and decision-making process. The restructuring is being implemented at this time because the commission wishes to have the new structure in place before the spring.

To broaden input from the public, stakeholders and Indigenous communities, the IJC will be establishing an advisory group to the board. Members of the advisory group will provide information and advice directly to the Board to ensure that the Board is aware of potential impacts and fully considers their diverse perspectives. The Board will also continue to rely on engineering and technical expertise from both countries.

As a first step, the IJC is appointing a smaller interim advisory group effective at the same time as the re-structured board. 

“The restructuring represents a streamlined approach for this board,” said Jane Corwin, chair of the IJC’s US Section. “Commissioners enlarged the board last year, but after careful consideration determined that a smaller decision-making body with input from a more-inclusive advisory body would be more effective and appropriate.”

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