Belgrade Conservation Alliance to Hold Annual Meeting
September 08, 2009 -
BELGRADE -- The Belgrade Regional Conservation Alliance will hold its annual dinner meeting Wednesday at Alden Camps in Oakland.
Discussion will center on future land acquisitions for public recreational use and wildlife habitat, Youth Conservation Corps' ongoing efforts to reduce pollution and erosion within the Belgrade Lakes watershed and the more than 8,000 boat inspections conducted this summer.
The alliance has already permanently conserved nearly 5,500 acres of land, collectively known as the Kennebec Highlands, which is open to the public for hiking, cross-country skiing, fishing and hunting, said BRCA Executive Director Peter Kallin.
In addition to its land-acquisition and stewardship efforts, the alliance runs programs to improve water quality throughout the seven Belgrade Lakes, to prevent invasive plants, and to educate the public on how to minimize human impact on the lakes.
Also on the meeting agenda will be a discussion of new options in the Department of Environmental Protection's Lakesmart program.
Lakesmart is a program designed to foster "living lightly on the lakes."
"We here in the Belgrades are involved in a pilot program to expand that effort, to extend its reach beyond what the DEP inspectors would be able to do on their own," Kallin said.
BRCA funds its programs and land acquisitions through private donors and foundation grants, as well as partnering with the Department of Conservation to apply for Land for Maine's Future Program funding.
The association is currently in the process of raising a $595,000 match to a $227,000 Land for Maine's Future grant for acquisitions and easements that will protect an additional 1,100 acres in the existing Kennebec Highlands from development.
While the meeting is primarily for BRCA members, anyone interested in learning more may also attend the dinner meeting by contacting Executive Director Peter Kallin at 495-6039 by today.
The meeting fee is $19. A social hour begins at 5:15 p.m., with dinner at 6:30 p.m., followed by the meeting.
BY NANCY GALLAGHER
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