Stakeholder Participation


A successful Buffalo River ERMP depends upon feedback and input from stakeholders. The plan itself will evolve as a collaboration between GLNPO and the businesses, organizations, agencies, municipalities and residents of the Buffalo River project area. Working together, these groups will define the ERMP vision, establish goals and objectives, and provide input regarding what restoration should “look like” within the project area.

Kickoff Meeting Summary (June 24, 2010)

The Buffalo River ERMP kickoff meeting was held on Thursday, June 24 at the Millennium Hotel in Buffalo.  This successful first meeting was attended by approximately 30 stakeholders representing a wide range of regional interests.


Kickoff Meeting Presentation

The project team, represented by Ecology and Environment, Inc. and EPA's Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO), opened the meeting with a 45 minute presentation, followed by a few minutes of Q&A. The presentation and meeting materials can be found here. Presenters described the project goals and draft mission statement, schedule, and study area. Additionally,the presentation included an overview of what has been done to date (desktop review and references), and what remains to be done (additional desktop review, field assessments and evaluations of restoration areas). Stakeholders were asked to help refine the ERMP mission statement, identify broad opportunities and challenges of ecological restoration along the river, and provide input on potential restoration sites.

Small Group Facilitated Discussion

Following the presentation, the 30 participants were asked to break into smaller, facilitated discussion groups. Each group elected a note-taker and a spokesperson. Stakeholders spent 15 minutes working individually to answer the following questions:

1) How would you revise the following draft mission statement?

"To identify, facilitate and implement opportunities for habitat restoration within the Buffalo River Corridor and its tributaries to support a healthy, sustainable system for the benefit of habitat, wildlife and our community."

2) Keeping in mind the project goals, please list two examples of what you consider to be the most promising opportunities/biggest constraints for restoration of the Buffalo River and its primary tributaries.

3) Using your local knowledge, which site(s), species or habitat(s) should be considered during development of the ERMP?

4) Should we add any studies or references to our preliminary list of project references?

5) Are there any stakeholder groups/individuals not at this meeting who should be added to our outreach list?

Kickoff Meeting Presentation 2

After completing the handout, stakeholders spent the next hour discussing their respones, documenting the key points, and providing feedback. At the end of the meeting, each spokesperson reported/summarized the results of the small group discussions for the larger group.


 Next Steps

Stakeholder input was used for the development of the ERMP.  Responses to the stakeholder questions were reviewed and the mission statement was finalized. The feedback recieved regarding opportunities and constraints associated with the development of the ERMP was organized and categorized into a master list (available on the Documents page).


Follow Up Meetings (Summer/Fall 2010)

Following the kickoff meeting, the project team met one-on-one with representatives from local municipalities, Native American Nations, non-profit organizations, and business owners with vested interest in the restoration and development along the Buffalo River.  The meetings provided valuable information to the project team regarding local priorities and ongoing or planned activities on candidate restoration sites.  Meetings were held with the following stakeholders:

  • Town of Cheektowaga;
  • Town of West Seneca;
  • Town of Lancaster;
  • Tonawanda Band of Senecas;
  • Tuscarora Nation;
  • Erie County Department of Environment and Planning;
  • City of Buffalo;
  • Buffalo Urban Development Corporation;
  • Buffalo Green Energy; and
  • Local businesses.

Stakeholder Meeting #2 (May 9, 2011)

A Stakeholder Meeting was held on Monday, May 9, 2011 from 5:30 pm - 8:00 pm to describe the project, share findings and receive comments. The meeting was held at the Millennium Hotel, Fillmore Room (2040 Walden Avenue, Buffalo NY). Comments were collected before, during, and after the meeting and incorporated into the Final ERMP, which is now available on this web site.




E-mail with any comments, questions or feedback.

1st Stakeholder Meeting: June 2010
The project "kickoff" meeting took place on June 24, 2010 and included representatives of key stakeholder groups such as local, state, and federal agencies and interest groups. The purpose of the meeting was to introduce the project and solicit input on restoration opportunities and challenges. The presentation and meeting materials can be found here.

Follow Up Meetings:  Summer/Fall 2010
Following the kickoff meeting, the project team met one-on-one with representatives from local municipalites, Native American Nations, non-profit organizations, and business owners.  The purpose of these meetings was to solicit input on local priorities and ongoing/planned activities on candidate restoration sites.

2nd Stakeholder Meeting: Spring 2011
During the second stakeholder meeting project team members introduced the draft ERMP, including proposed restoration sites. Key issues and concerns raised during the meeting were documented for consideration during the preparation of the final plan.