Parks Commission works to prevent invasive species
Invasive species may threaten the future of Lake George if action isn't taken. The Lake George Parks Commission is looking to propose a mandatory inspection of recreational boats entering the lake to prevent against further infestation. Our Brooke Selby has more.
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LAKE GEORGE, N.Y. -- The future of Lake George may not be as clear as the water itself.
"We're battling five different invasive species at the moment and we really don't want to be battling anymore," said Walter Lender, Executive Director of the Lake George Association.
For the last two years, both the town of Lake George and Bolton Landing have tried to eradicate the invasive Asian clam which fouls the water and coats the bottom of the lake. Sadly, their efforts have failed.
"If invasive species do take of the lake, then it would effect the tourism and the economic development of the area," noted Lender.
That could result in job loss, and declining property values down the road.
"Two thirds of the boats on Lake George are what we call Lake George only boats. They don't go off to other lakes, they stay here. Those boats aren't a threat to bringing in new invasive species," explained Dave Wick, Executive Director of Lake George Park Commission.
It is other boats from outside the area that pose the greatest threat. Currently there is over 30 public and private launching sites on the lake, much like the one at Million Dollar Beach. The idea is to add four to six cleaning stations so that boats can be checked before entering the lake.
The Park Commission has an annual budget of $1.2 million, but this project is estimated to cost close to $1 million alone for staff and inspections. Therefore, Lake George has asked for additional help from the county and state to pay for it. The Park Commission expects a reply from the state within the next two weeks.