Schumer: Plan would fight invasive species

Corning, NY — Citing threats to the Finger Lakes and other upstate New York waterways, Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., is proposing a federal grant program to combat invasive aquatic species.

Schumer wants to create an early detection and rapid response grant program to “attack these species when they are easily and cheaply eradicated.”

Many invasive aquatic plant and animal species can be easily spread and can take hold quickly, affecting tourism, recreation, commercial fishing and shipping, he said.

Under Schumer’s proposed legislation, states could petition the Department of Interior for a grant and technical assistance as soon as they identify a threat from an invasive species.

His plan calls for “active detection networks” at the local level to identify a potential threat, and he wants multiple agencies at the federal, state and local level to work together to contain or eradicate the invasive species. Schumer’s legislation would put funding in place quickly, he said.

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