Register now for Great Lakes Days in Washington: Feb. 23-25!
The 2009 Semiannual Meeting of the Great Lakes Commission and Great Lakes Days in Washington will be held Feb. 23-25. Promoting our Great Lakes federal policy agenda will be more important than ever next year with the new Obama administration in the White House and many new members of Congress. In these tough economic times, it’s important that Washington recognizes that investing in the Great Lakes means jobs and economic stimulus for our region.
The Great Lakes Day events will feature dialogue on Great Lakes priorities by regional leaders and members of Congress, including Obama appointees who will play a critical role in shaping Great Lakes policies in the years ahead. Great Lakes Day participants are encouraged to visit Senate and House member offices on Capitol Hill to advocate for Great Lakes-related legislative programs. Online registration and additional information is now available at www.glc.org/meeting. If you register for both events before Feb. 2, you will receive a $25 discount. Early registration is encouraged. Contact: Matt Doss, email@example.com.
Commission looks ahead with enthusiasm toward Obama’s Great Lakes agenda
Citing President-elect Barack Obama’s campaign commitments to Great Lakes protection, the Great Lakes Commission (GLC) is expressing strong enthusiasm for the opportunity at hand to make serious progress toward Great Lakes restoration goals. In a Dec. 9 letter to Obama’s transition headquarters in Chicago, GLC Chair and Illinois Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn congratulated his fellow Illinoisan, saying, “We applaud the vision you outlined for Great Lakes restoration during your campaign for the presidency and we pledge our support to work with you and your administration to make it a reality.” Quinn specifically highlighted three priorities for the President-elect’s attention: Funding for Great Lakes infrastructure in an early economic stimulus package; appointment of a high-level coordinator for the Great Lakes; and establishment of a long-term funding mechanism to restore the Great Lakes, which can help implement an Obama campaign proposal to establish a federal trust fund of at least $5 billion over a 10-year period to support Great Lakes protection and restoration. Contact: Tim Eder, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Three Great Lakes Senate seats yet to be finalized
Great Lakes representation in the U.S. Senate is still taking shape following the Nov. 4 general election. At last report, one Senate race was still undecided, and two Senate seats put into play by the presidential election outcome were still vacant. In Minnesota, Sen. Norm Coleman (R) continued to hold on to a slim 288-vote lead in a recount of the vote in which Coleman and Democrat Al Franken virtually tied. Challenges to hundreds of ballots have been issued by both camps. In Illinois, the Senate seat formerly held by President-Elect Barack Obama was enveloped in controversy following the Dec. 9 arrest of Gov. Rod Blagojevich for allegedly attempting to “sell” the seat for financial gain. Illinois Lt. Gov., and Great Lakes Commission chair, Pat Quinn has called for the governor to step down. Impeachment proceedings for Blagojevich have begun in the Illinois State Legislature. In New York, the Senate seat held by Hillary Clinton became open with her nomination by Obama as Secretary of State. That appointment rests with Gov. David Paterson. Contact: Tim Eder, email@example.com.
Soil erosion projects in Pennsylvania, New York featured in “Keeping it On the Land” now available
Updates on two major projects in 2008 and a report on the Great Lakes Commission’s strategic approach to non-point source pollution prevention are included in the electronic newsletter “Keeping it On the Land” (www.glc.org/basin/pubs/keeping/dec08) recently released online. The newsletter is produced by the Great Lakes Basin Program for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control, administered by the Commission. One of the featured projects involves efforts to control sediment erosion from unpaved roads at the headwaters of Mill Creek in Erie County, Pa. Another is a culvert erosion control project in Wyoming County in western New York. Also included in the newsletter is an overview of the Great Lakes Commission’s expanded vision for its non-point source pollution control agenda, developed in its strategic plan completed in 2008. Contact: Gary Overmier, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applications being accepted for 2009 Sea Grant Fellowship
Applications are being accepted until Jan. 30, 2009, for the Great Lakes Commission – Sea Grant Fellowship. This 10th annual fellowship provides an opportunity for a graduate student to work for a year at the Commission office in Ann Arbor in such areas as Great Lakes science, policy and information/education. The program is sponsored by the Commission, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Sea Grant College Program and the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network. Working with Commission staff and partner agencies, GLC-Sea Grant fellows are directly involved with research coordination, policy analysis and other project work promoting environmental quality and sustainable economic development in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence basin. The length of assignment is for one year and is nonrenewable. The dates of the official fellowship are June 1, 2009, until May 31, 2010; however, these dates are flexible to accommodate academic semester or recipient needs. Eligible applicants include students who, at the time of application, are in a graduate or professional degree program in public policy, public health, natural resources, aquatic sciences or other related field at a U.S. accredited institution of higher education. Contact: Christine Manninen, email@example.com.