On behalf of the Board of NJCOLA, I hope this letter finds your association members healthy, safe, and adjusting in a positive manner to the difficulties presented by these unprecedented and challenging times. While current conditions undoubtedly are daunting, we strongly believe that with spirit, care, and perseverance we will return to our normal lake community style of life.
Your Board is determined to continue to do everything within its power to support the Mission and Objectives of NJCOLA with emphasis on serving your lake water quality and lake management needs. In the past, this was accomplished via onsite technical presentations, information sharing, identification and dissemination of best practices, and timely topic discussions. Short term, given the current circumstances and guidelines, it will not be possible to continue to meet in a social setting. Therefore, for approximately the next three months (subject to change depending upon prevailing conditions at the end of that time), we will make every effort to communicate with you via the NJCOLA website (njcola.com). In addition, we are planning to hold frequent Board meetings via ZOOM or one of several other teleconferencing venues in order to direct and manage NJCOLA affairs. Further, we plan to frequently publish and upload articles on the website. As always, we are very interested in receiving member feedback on the subjects, topics, and questions of most value to you. You can always communicate with us via the Contact information provided on the website.
Until the COVID-19 virus enemy is destroyed, I strongly advise strict adherence to the President’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America (coronavirus.gov) and the advice of Healthcare professionals. I echo their advice to follow good hygiene practice: 1) effectively wash hands often, 2) use hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available, 3) keep hands off and away from the face, mouth, nose, and eyes and 4) practice social distancing.
We extend our prayers, our best wishes, and our hopes that you all remain healthy and safe through these trying times. Overall, I urge you to remain strong and positive. We will defeat the COVID-19 enemy.
Ernest Hofer PE
STATEMENTS BY NJ REPRESENTATIVES MISGUIDED
Dear New Jersey Herald,
As President of the New Jersey Coalition of Lake Associations (NJCOLA), a coalition of 83 individual lake associations situated within Northern New Jersey, I am very disheartened to read the statement released by New Jersey District 24 representatives Senator Steve Oroho and Assembly Members Parker Space and Hal Wirths regarding alleged “tactics” taken by lake associations in regard to collections during the current COVID-19 pandemic. (The New Jersey Herald, April 26, 2020, Section A).
In direct opposition to their unfounded and unsubstantiated statements, most New Jersey Lake Associations are cognizant and respectful of the hardships currently being endured by their residents and have stood ready to deal with membership payment issues on a case-by-case basis.
EXECUTIVE ORDERS AND EMERGENCY LEGISLATION - last updated 4/16/20
EXECUTIVE ORDERS: Governor Murphy has signed several Executive Orders related to the coronavirus emergency. All Orders can be found at https://nj.gov/infobank/eo/056murphy/
Continue reading the Executive Orders and Legislation that impact lake associations.
ASSOCIATION RESPONSES / ACTIONS to COVID-19 CRISIS updated 4/20/20
One of the goals of NJCOLA is to share information for the benefit of all members. As part of NJCOLA’s outreach during these unprecedented times due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this is to inform you of general guidelines being followed and practices being implemented by a number of our association members. While we usually focus more specifically on matters of a technical nature, over the next few months or for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis we want to address the operational-and community-side of how we are managing our individual member lake associations / organizations.
American Red Cross (ARC) Lifeguard Certification Training during COVID19
The American Red Cross on Friday, April 17, 2020 provided information via an online meeting among Red Cross professional staff, instructor trainers and instructors. These help to provide guidance for conducting training, dealing with re certifications and initial training.
BASIS FOR THE NJDEP 2020 HAB ALERT LEVELS by Randall Sprague and Ernest Hofer 6/3/20
NJDEP held a Microsoft Teams meeting on May 21 to explain the new HAB Alert Levels. Ernie Hofer and I attended that May 21 NJDEP meeting, which was by invite only. The session was simultaneous with NJDEP issuing a press release of the new HAB alert levels. By now most of you have likely seen the below NJDEP table for 2020 HAB Alert Tiers, which was published in many newspapers.
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State Fiscal Year 2019 Grants to Prevent, Mitigate and/or Control Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) Project Descriptions by Emily McGuckin AmeriCorps Watershed Ambassador 5/16/20
In 2019, many New Jersey lakes including a few reservoirs experienced significant algal blooms that impacted economic, recreational, and community environments. To address the crisis, the State of New Jersey approved grants totaling $2.5 million plus a matching portion of 33% to undertake experimental programs to be centered on the development of up to 15 emerging and innovative lake water treatment approaches. Continue reading article on approved grants.
LMCC Awarded the NJDEP Grant to Prevent, Mitigate and /or Control Harmful Algal Blooms!!! In response to the 2019 Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB) experienced by numerous lakes in New Jersey, the Governor initiated a total of $2.5 million in grant funding to improve water quality this year.
Continue reading more about this grant and other HAB articles.
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To learn more about other 2019 funded grants awarded by the DEP to “Prevent, Mitigate and/or Control Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs)”, go to the DEP website.