The Belgrade Lakes Association will conduct a survey Tuesday and Wednesday, Sept. 22-23, of the developed land areas in the Long Pond watershed which includes portions of land within the towns of Rome, Mount Vernon, Belgrade, Vienna and New Sharon. The purpose of the survey is to identify and prioritize sources of erosion and stormwater runoff that may affect the water quality of the lake, which is considered impaired for not meeting state water quality standards because of a decline in water quality over the past 30 years. The last survey of the Long Pond watershed was conducted in 2002, according to a news release from the association.

Current information is needed to help develop a watershed management plan that will protect and improve water quality. A new survey is also a necessary step for applying and receiving grant funding from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. These funds can provide cost-sharing opportunities for landowners, road associations, and towns to complete improvements identified during the survey. Acquiring grant funding is a two- to three-year process that begins with the volunteer assisted watershed survey, followed by updating the watershed management plan.

Residents owning land in the Long Pond watershed were notified by mail the week of Aug. 17. Participation in the survey is voluntary and landowners do not need to be present to participate. All survey work will be completed in compliance with state COVID-19 guidelines to ensure the safety of survey volunteers and landowners.

For more information, contact association at 207-512-5150 or [email protected].