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AUSABLE WATER WISE: Shore Owners’ Association seeks input for lake survey

Lake Placid is beloved as a recreational hub for innumerable people, including boaters of all kinds. (Provided photo — Brendan Wiltse)

The Shore Owners’ Association of Lake Placid is seeking public input to inform the first formal lake management plan for Lake Placid lake. Working with the Ausable River Association, the SOA is soliciting input from everyone who cares about Lake Placid lake to learn what they love about it and what worries they may have about its future. The plan will identify strategies to protect and ensure the health of the lake for decades to come.

Public input is being gathered via a survey posted on the SOA website.

This is an opportunity for anyone who enjoys the lake to provide input on the plan in the early phase of development. Whether you hike the trails at Brewster Peninsula, kayak to Whiteface Landing or own a camp, consider making time for this brief survey.

Lake Placid is beloved as a recreational hub with its enticing blend of wilderness access, clean water, shoreline camps, and its proximity to Lake Placid village — which pulls its drinking water from the lake. Threats exist, however, to the lake’s health. For several years, for example, SOA has been managing an invasive milfoil infestation in Paradox Bay — the only aquatic invasive species confirmed in the lake. Increasing boat traffic on the lake and the threat of invasive species spread by boats or equipment used in other waterbodies, reinforces the importance of a plan to protect this incredible resource. Lake Placid also faces challenges from climate change, runoff, septic systems and harmful algal blooms.

To address these challenges, earlier this year, the SOA began working with Brendan Wiltse, AsRA’s former science director, to develop a plan to address concerns on the lake.

“As we work to develop the lake management plan it is important that we understand how the public uses and enjoys Lake Placid lake, and what their concerns are related to its protection,” said Wiltse, who is now the water quality director for the Adirondack Watershed Institute at Paul Smith’s College, a partner in this effort.

You can take the survey now. Broad public participation will capture the many issues that need to be addressed and help ensure all voices are heard in the development of the lake management plan.

The survey is open to the public through the end of September 2020 and can be completed at lpsoa.org/survey.

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(Kelley Tucker is the executive director of the Ausable River Association, based in Wilmington.)