Representatives of all six New England states met in Concord in early December to review programs and get updates on lake issues in each state. The spread of invasive plants and increased frequency of cyanobacteria blooms continue to be the primary biological threats. Retirements and reduced staffing in state agencies represent the primary administrative issue. Funding cutbacks, especially for federal “pass-through” monies, constitute the greatest economic disincentive for lake management. Yet the demand for lake management remains high, and many lake associations and towns have been addressing issues on their own. NECNALMS continues to seek ways to support efforts by New England states to foster effective and sound lake management.
Lake leaders discussed past and future conferences. New Hampshire is due to host NECNALMS in 2018, but with the normal organizers very involved in national efforts by NALMS and changes in policies at the typical conference venues, it is not certain that there will be a 2018 NECNALMS conference. It is possible that NALMS will come to New England in 2019, in which case the NECNALMS leadership will be very involved in planning that conference starting in mid-2018. A decision will be made soon.
The 2017 NALMS symposium was held in early November just outside Denver, CO, and was both well-attended and well-run. The program was diverse and opportunities for interactions were plentiful. The Colorado Lake and Reservoir Management Association was the local host, and did a fine job on the arrangements. NALMS has been experiencing some financial stress relating to federal freezes on programs and funds, but is managing carefully to avoid shortfalls. The 2018 conference will be held in Cincinnati, OH and a decision on the 2019 location should be made this coming spring.
NECNALMS leaders are also very active on the national and international levels through NALMS. Perry Thomas of VT serves as the Region I director, while Amy Smagula of NH is the NALMS Secretary. Jeff Schloss of NH is the conference planner, while Ken Wagner of MA returns to duty at the start of 2018 as Editor-in-Chief of the NALMS peer-reviewed scientific journal, Lake and Reservoir Management.