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State of New Jersey
Executive Order #115

Governor Christine Todd Whitman

WHEREAS, the lakes of the State of New Jersey are an important water resource of the State; and

WHEREAS, these lakes provide substantial benefits to the residents of the State and to its visitors, including many recreational opportunities, such as boating, fishing, and swimming; and

WHEREAS, these lakes provide an important element of open space and essential habitat to diverse species of plants and animals, and also serve as an essential source of surface water for numerous potable water systems; and

WHEREAS, a large number of these lakes are exhibiting indications of stresses to water quality, including sedimentation, excess growth of nuisance and exotic plant and algal species, and other symptoms of eutrophication; and

WHEREAS, federal grant funds provided since the late 1970s through the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Lakes program for public lake restoration projects are no longer available; and

WHEREAS, the State has obligated all of the $5 million for public lake restoration projects authorized by the 1996 "Port of New Jersey Revitalization, Dredging, Environmental Cleanup and Lake Restoration and Delaware Bay Economic Development Bond Act"; and

WHEREAS, maintaining our investment in lakes will require the continued financial commitment of the State and its private, not for profit, federal and local government partners; and

WHEREAS, it is prudent at this time to identify strategies to restore and properly manage the State's lakes, including fiscally responsible strategies for financing this work;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, CHRISTINE TODD WHITMAN, Governor of the State of New Jersey, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and by the Statutes of this State, do hereby order and direct:

1. There is established in, but not of, the Department of Environmental Protection a Lake Restoration and Management Advisory Task Force ("Task Force").

2. The Task Force shall consist of fifteen (15) members as follows:

(a) The Commissioner of Environmental Protection, or a designee, shall serve ex-officio;

(b) The State Treasurer, or a designee, shall serve ex-officio;

(c) The Commissioner of Community Affairs, or a designee, shall serve ex-officio;

(d) The Executive Director of the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust, or a designee, shall serve ex-officio;

(e) Seven (7) public members who have expertise in public finance and water resource management shall be directly appointed by the Governor for terms of one year;

(f) Four (4) members of the Legislature shall be appointed as follows: two (2) members, one from each political party, shall be appointed by the President of the Senate to serve during the two-year legislative session in which the appointment is made, and two (2) members, one from each political party, shall be appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly to serve during the two-year legislative session in which the appointment is made.

3. The Task Force shall organize and meet as soon as practicable after the appointment of a majority of its members. The Governor shall appoint a Chairperson and Vice- Chairperson. Each member shall hold office for the term of appointment and until his or her successor is appointed and qualified. A member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring on the Task Force for any reason other than the expiration of the term shall have a term of appointment for the unexpired term only. A member may be appointed for any number of consecutive terms. The members shall serve without compensation, but shall be reimbursed for necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties as members.

4. The Task Force shall examine the causes of lake eutrophication, the types of measures necessary to restore and properly manage lakes, and ways to finance such work. Specifically, the Task Force shall:

(a) summarize readily available information on the number, location, ownership and condition of lakes in the State, the common causes of degradation in their condition, and the types of remedial measures necessary to restore and properly manage such lakes;

(b) estimate the costs to assess, restore and manage lakes;

(c) identify existing sources of funding that may be applied to these costs; and

(d) make recommendations regarding ways to finance the restoration of lakes, including the appropriate role of federal, State and local government, and private and not-for- profit entities.

5. The Task Force is authorized to call upon any department, office or agency of State government to provide such information, resources or other assistance deemed necessary to discharge its responsibilities under this Order. Each department, office or agency of the State is hereby directed, to the extent not inconsistent with law and within budgetary constraints, to cooperate with the Task Force to furnish it with such information, personnel and assistance as is necessary to accomplish the purposes of the Order.

6. The Task Force shall present a report to the Governor, the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the General Assembly, setting forth its findings, conclusions and recommendations no later than one year from the date of its organizational meeting; provided, however, for good cause, the Chairperson may allow for a reasonable extension of the one-year time period.

7. This Order shall take effect immediately.

GIVEN, under my hand and seal,
this 27th day of June in the Year
of Our Lord, Two Thousand and
of the Independence of the United
States, the Two Hundred and
Twenty-Fourth.

/s/ Christine Todd Whitman

Governor

[seal]

Attest:

/s/ Robert E. Fabricant
Chief Counsel to the Governor

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