DEP AND CAPE MAY COUNTY SIGN CONTRACT TO PROTECT AREA
COUNTY TO RECEIVE $400,000
Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Bob Shinn
today signed a contract with the Cape May County Freeholders to develop
a comprehensive watershed management plan to protect and improve water
quality throughout the Cape May area.
The Cape May County Freeholders will receive $400,000 for the two-year
contract and a total of $600,000 over four years to complete the scope
The plan will encompass the 267-square-mile watershed, known as Area
16, which covers 17 municipalities in Cape May County and Maurice River
Township in Cumberland County. Area 16 covers the Dennis, East, West,
Fishing and Green creeks, Great Cedar, Timber and Beaver swamps. Also,
Jenkins, Jarvis, Grassy and Great sounds and Townsend's Inlet.
Commissioner Shinn signed the contract with Freeholder Director Daniel
Beyel at a ceremony held at the Wetlands Institute in Stone Harbor.
Cape May County will work in partnership with local organizations including
the Cape May County Water Resources Coordinating Council, the League of
Women Voters and the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions.
DEP has signed contracts and awarded funds to local partners for nearly
all of New Jersey's 20 watershed management areas so that planning can
begin statewide this year.
Governor Whitman, who initiated the watershed management program, said,
"This plan will protect Cape May's environmentally sensitive waterways
which are invaluable resources that are enjoyed by millions of New Jerseyans
"Working together, we will produce a plan that will protect the Cape
May area watershed by identifying strategies to reduce various sources
of non-point source pollution. Controlling nonpoint, or "people" pollution,
requires everyone's understanding and involvement to reduce the impacts
on waterways," said Shinn.
The county will seek input from other local groups and interested citizens
in developing the plan at the partnership's meetings. Task committees
will conduct public outreach and other technical and support work. Upon
completion of a draft plan, DEP will seek formal public comment and review
prior to adoption.