Second Largest Recreational Lake Shutting Down Due to Toxic Algae Bloom
In light of news that Greenwood Lake will close due to a toxic algae bloom, Senator Joe Pennacchio called for the State Assembly to immediately vote on his legislation that would create and annually dedicate half-a-million dollars to the New Jersey Greenwood Lake Fund.
In light of news that Greenwood Lake will close due to a toxic algae bloom, Sen. Joe Pennacchio has called on the Assembly to vote on his bill that would establish the “NJ Greenwood Lake Fund.” (GoogleMaps)
“New Jersey is in the midst of a water crisis – toxic algae is spreading across our freshwater lakes at an alarming rate,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “The expense of protecting Greenwood Lake shouldn’t fall on the backs of the local residents and business owners in West Milford alone. The State of New Jersey must prioritize funding to safeguard one of Passaic County’s most popular and scenic waterways.”
On July 16, 2019, it was announced that swimming and other recreational activities would be banned at Greenwood Lake due to a dangerous overgrowth of algae. Similarly, Lake Hopatcong, New Jersey’s largest freshwater body, was closed in late June as a consequence of a toxic algae bloom.
Pennacchio’s bipartisan legislation, S-2167, would annually commit $500,000 to the “New Jersey Greenwood Lake Fund.” The funding would be dedicated from existing New Jersey vessel registration and renewal fees from the “Maritime Industry Fund.” S-2167 has passed the State Senate, and needs the approval of the State Assembly prior to heading to the governor’s desk.
An interstate waterway, Greenwood Lake spans nine miles across the New Jersey/New York border. The lake feeds North Jersey’s major source of drinking water, the Monksville and Wanaque Reservoir, and supplies drinking water to 3.5 million residents and thousands of businesses on a daily basis.
Before the toxic algae bloom, Greenwood Lake was a popular tourist destination attracting swimmers, boaters, and fishers alike.
Monies dedicated to the Greenwood Lake Fund will be used to protect, preserve, maintain, and enhance the New Jersey side of Greenwood Lake.
“Investing in Greenwood Lake is a matter of public health that also protects New Jersey’s tourism economy,” added Pennacchio. “This treasured natural resource feeds into the reservoir systems that supply millions of New Jerseyans and thousands of businesses with their drinking water each day. I urge the State Assembly to pass this legislation as soon as possible ensure the preservation of New Jersey’s second largest lake.”
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