Wednesday, January 23, 2013

New York DEC: All options will be considered in invasive species debate

By John Alexander

LAKE GEORGE, NY -- There’s still life to the Lake George Park Commission’s proposal that could see a mandatory boat inspection and washing program encircle the lake, state officials said Tuesday.

Park Commission officials have spent months in negotiations with the state Department of Environmental Conservation and Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office trying to garner state-level support for the proposed invasive-species fighting measure.

Park Commission members have regularly griped that DEC was uninterested in the conversations. But that’s suddenly changed as weekly three-way conversations are now under way. “All the options are on the table,” said DEC Region 5 Director Bob Stegemann, when asked if his agency supports boat washing or a less-restrictive alternative. ...

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Lake George Targets Invasive Species

Wall Street Journal
Associated Press

LAKE GEORGE, N.Y.—State regulators are working on a long-term plan to protect Lake George from invasive species, possibly including mandatory boat inspections.

The Lake George Park Commission had been developing plans for inspections and washing, with a $40 fee. That plan is now on hold while the Department of Environmental Conservation drafts an environmental impact statement, seeks public input, and considers alternatives.

The 32-mile-long Adirondack lake already has some invasive species such as milfoil and Asian clams. The commission has programs to fight those species, including spreading plastic mats to smother them.

The state has agreed to provide $50,000 to expand a boat steward program, and $200,000 to fight Asian clams. Environmentalists say mandatory boat inspection and washing is the best way to prevent spread of invasive species. ...

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