Boy and Candelaria Reardon remain committed to helping communities along the Lake Michigan shoreline

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INDIANAPOLIS – State Representative Pat Boy (D-Michigan City) and State Representative Mara Candelaria Reardon (D-Munster) issued statements in response to Governor Holcomb’s Executive Order regarding the crisis Hoosiers are facing along Lake Michigan’s shoreline:  

“The erosion along the Lake Michigan shoreline cannot be stopped by the passage of legislation or endless months of debate,” said Boy. “This is an issue that demands swift, hands-on action. That is why I sent a letter to the governor two months ago calling for him to issue a Declaration of Emergency for communities along the lakeshore in Porter and LaPorte counties. Due to record-high water levels and erosion, these communities have faced serious damage to key infrastructure, including things like water main lines and gas lines. The governor’s promise to do something is only good if he intends to act quickly before Hoosiers suffer any further damage.”

“I am happy that Governor Holcomb has taken action to address a very serious problem in Northwest Indiana,” said Candelaria Reardon. “I will remain in communication with the appropriate agencies to ensure that they work with local leaders to get all the pertinent information needed for the next steps. I remain committed to the protection of our lakefront.”

The lake’s water level, in combination with recent storm waves, has resulted in conditions this part of the lake hasn't seen in decades. The governors of Illinois and Wisconsin have declared a State of Emergency for their communities affected by abnormally high water levels and erosion along the Lake Michigan shoreline.

Boy and State Senator Karen Tallian (D-Ogden Dunes) sent a letter to the governor’s office in January asking him to issue a Declaration of Emergency for communities in Porter and LaPorte counties along the Lake Michigan shoreline so that they would be eligible for federal relief funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). In response to their letter, Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS) Executive Director Stephen Cox said, “to date (January 15, 2020), we are unaware of any loss of infrastructure (i.e. roads, bridges, public utilities, etc.) which would qualify for public assistance funding from federal or state disaster relief programs.”

Last week, Candelaria Reardon pressed the governor to survey the damage to communities in Northwest Indiana along the Lake Michigan shoreline. The governor promised Candelaria Reardon that he would come visit these communities in the near future.

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