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STAND UP FOR MAINE LAKES

posted Apr 10, 2017, 4:42 AM by Joseph Bickard
Have you ever considered STANDING UP FOR MAINE LAKES?  Now is the moment.

Clean Water Act Funds Cut from the US EPA Budget!  

End of Nonpoint Source Program Grants? 
What the proposed cut in the Federal Budget means for us is that we will lose the capacity to tackle the largest, most damaging sources of pollution to Maine lakes, streams and coastal waters. The cut eliminates the only significant funding our state gets to protect and restore Maine waters.  "319" or Nonpoint Source Water Pollution Control Grants, awarded by Maine DEP to towns, watershed groups and Soil and Water Conservation Districts, correct or eliminate sources of pollution too costly for individuals, groups or even towns and cities to handle alone. These 319 grants are funded by Clean Water Act money that comes to Maine DEP from US EPA. They require a local match  that extends the good.  

Outcome: no funds will be available after 2017 and DEP would lose 9 full time staff positions dedicated to water quality protection and restoration.

View DEP 319 Report


PREVENT THE DEBACLE!

Stand Up for Maine Lakes!
Please take a few minutes to write your members of Congress -- your Senator and Representative. Be brief, identify yourself and the lake(s) you care about, and tell why protecting water quality is vital. Give several reasons why it is urgent to restore Clean Water Act funding to the 319 Nonpoint Source Pollution Program. Some general facts you can use are below, but your own experience and values are more important than anything else you can write or say. Generic letters don't count for much with elected officials.
        •       Maine lakes annually generate over $3.5 billion in spending, power 52,000 jobs, and drive the economies of whole regions across our state.
        •       Tourism is Maine's #1 industry, and lakes are a big contributor.
        •       Lakes are highly sensitive water bodies that keep 90% of what enters them. 
        •       Nutrient buildup increases the likelihood of nuisance and/or toxic algal blooms that ruin recreation, property values, and businesses.
        •       "Repeated nuisance algal blooms have been recorded on more than 53 Maine lakes and another 493 are considered at significant risk" according to the Maine Department of Environmental Protection web site.
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