By Lucy Grindon, NCPR, August 9, 2023
Congresswoman Claudia Tenney announced on Wednesday that Customs and Border Protection has started looking into other possible building sites besides Clayton’s Blind Bay for the new facility it plans to construct to replace its current facility on Wellesley Island.
CBP wants a new, larger facility to accommodate more agents. They also want space for a detention center, working dogs and boats, so one advantage of Blind Bay is its direct water access.
But some area residents and conservationist group Save The River have been trying to stop CBP from building at Blind Bay. They say it’s a pristine natural environment and a crucial breeding ground for the Muskie, a popular sport fish.
Tenney and Senator Chuck Schumer have also voiced opposition to the Blind Bay site.
Tenney’s statement says she’s been bringing community concerns to her meetings with CBP officials.
“We have made it extraordinarily clear that the North Country does not want this station constructed in Blind Bay,” Tenney said in her statement.
Now, Tenney says CBP is considering other locations. The agency has also promised to be more transparent as the Wellesley Island relocation process continues, according to Tenney’s statement.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand opposed the site. Gillibrand has not taken a public position.