It looks like boat-washing stations will come to Lake George this year after the state granted $482,000 to Warren County for invasive species control.
A lack of funding had left the implementation of the boat-wash plan up in the air for 2014.
But county officials learned this week that the state had agreed to provide nearly half a million dollars for invasive species work, money that can be used to purchase five boat-washing stations and to do site preparation work for them. Their locations have yet to be determined.
Those costs will amount to about $200,000.
“We’re very excited about this. We’re thrilled to see the state participating with this serious problem,” Lake George Supervisor Dennis Dickinson said.
There are some strings attached to the grant, which caused some concern among supervisors Friday.
The Lake George Watershed Coalition — a consortium that includes the Lake George Park Commission, municipalities and environmental groups — wants to have the stations in place by mid-May for the upcoming boating season.
With the grant money coming on a reimbursement basis, money is needed up front to pay for the costs early this year.
And then there is concern about the state’s recent history of delayed grant payments, with some payments falling behind more than a year in the Charles R. Wood Park project in Lake George.
“I’ve been around long enough to know timely payments are not always the case,” Stony Creek Supervisor Frank Thomas, the county budget officer, said Friday.
The coalition also needs to “match” the grant dollar-for-dollar. The match can consist of cash or in-kind contributions, such as labor or materials.
David Wick, executive director of the Lake George Park Commission, said satisfying the match requirement should not be a problem, given the efforts of groups like the Lake George Association and Fund for Lake George and the money Warren County has put toward invasive species control.
“I don’t think we’ll have any problem matching the monies advanced by the towns and county,” Dickinson added.
The remainder of the grant money will be used for milfoil and Asian clam control efforts on the lake.
The county Board of Supervisors Invasive Species Sub-Committee and Finance Committee on Friday both approved acceptance of the grant, pending confirmation by County Attorney Martin Auffredou that the in-kind services the coalition hopes to use for the match are acceptable to the state.
“There will be no cash outlay from the county until I’m satisfied the state has approved the matches,” Auffredou said.
The Park Commission is in the process of creating regulations that will require all boaters entering the lake to have their boats inspected and washed if any non-native materials are found.