Finance staffer helps group win Lake Association of the Year award
Steve Pany, an accountant in the Finance Department, volunteers in his spare time for The Lake Volney Association near his family’s cabin in southern Minnesota. The Lake Volney Association was recently awarded the 2011 Lake Association of the Year Award for its efforts to improve lake quality. The award is presented by the statewide organization Minnesota Waters which evaluated the nominations for Lake Association of the year. Minnesota has 688 lake associations.
Pany serves on the Lake Volney Association’s board of directors as treasurer and website/business manager. He also developed a business model for the association.
The Lake Volney Association improved the lake's average water clarity from 3.5 feet in 1981 to its current 12.6 feet. The group was recognized for demonstrating successful lake management, education and outreach; encouraging strong membership involvement; and partnering with government and natural resource agencies. The Lake Volney group involved nearby homeowners and Le Sueur County in shoreline restoration and stabilization projects, such as installing native planting shoreline buffers. The association also obtained grants and tax exempt status, developed a website, and encouraged the county to hire professionals to work on Lake Volney and study the watershed through flyovers and a Minnesota Pollution Control TMDL study. TMDL stands for Total Maximum Daily Load and describes a value of the maximum amount of a pollutant that a body of water can receive while still meeting water quality standards
The Lake Volney Association will receive a $1,000 grant and be honored at a special presentation during Minnesota Waters annual Awards Night Celebration on Sept. 14 on Lake Minnetonka. The public is welcome to attend.
Pany reminds folks that we can all do things to maintain, preserve and improve Minnesota lakes for current and future generations by joining a lake association or taking simple steps around our homes and neighborhoods such as:
- Never dumping anything down a storm drain. Water in storm drains flows directly and untreated into our lakes, creeks, and rivers.
- Not sweeping grass clippings, leaves and dirt into the street. (Rain will carry these into the storm drains and then into our lakes, creeks and rivers.) Using a mulching attachment on your lawn mower turns the clippings into fertilizer for your lawn.
- Using a phosphorus-free lawn fertilizer.
- Washing your car on the grass or carwash rather than on the driveway to keep chemicals out of lakes.
For more ideas on how to protect water quality, visit /sustainability/action/sustainability_tips_protectwaterways.
Folks interested in finding a lake association near their home, cabin or vacation area can find one through Minnesota Waters website at www.minnesotawaters.org. (A Minneapolis example of an association is the Friends of Lake Nokomis. Their website is located at www.friendsoflakenokomis.org.
July 20, 2011
Published Jul. 20, 2011