The North Shore Council of Governments (NorCOG) is the third most senior of the five Tug Hill councils of governments, following the Cooperative Tug Hill Council and the Salmon Rivers Council of Governments. It was formed in 1977 as the North Shore Cooperative Planning Board, and later restructured as a council of governments, representing the broader scope of issues the participating towns and villages were called on to address. NorCOG currently includes the towns of Constantia and West Monroe and the villages of Central Square and Cleveland. In its earliest times, it also included the town of Hastings, which is currently an unaffiliated community, and the town of Vienna, which now belongs to the North-ern Oneida County Council of Governments. In addition to concerns common to towns and villages in the Tug Hill region, NorCOG has traditionally had a special interest in Oneida Lake issues, including water quality, water level management, waterfront access, and economic development potential related to being waterfront communities.
NorCOG is oriented along the north shore of Oneida Lake, north of Syracuse, New York. The population of NorCOG communities is 10,871, and the area is 140 square miles, 47.6 square miles of which is water. Central Square is wholly contained within the borders of the town of Hastings; the town borders of Constantia and West Monroe extend south to the south shore of Oneida Lake. Major highways include U.S. Route 11, Interstate Route 81, and New York State Route 49.
NorCOG consists of the chief elected official of the member town or village, plus an additional representative as designated by that member government. They meet at least twice a year with additional meetings as needed. They annually elect a chairman, vice chairman, and fiscal agent.
More information is available on NorCOG’s website, www.norcog.org.
Circuit Rider – Paul Baxter (West Monroe, 315-668-8945)