The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Garrett County will partner to develop a comprehensive watershed management plan for Deep Creek Lake.
DNR Secretary Joe Gill announced the agreement in concept at the third annual State of the Lake presentation at Garrett College. The draft agreement will be available for public comment until August 13.
The Deep Creek Lake Watershed Management Plan will serve as a comprehensive, best practices guide for protecting the lake’s natural resources. The plan will also address water quality and recreational activities including swimming, fishing, boating and scenic viewing.
The plan, which will be developed with input from stakeholders, will prioritize policy changes, restoration actions and public outreach needed to achieve both immediate and long term benefits.
The plan will also identify existing water quality and environmental conditions, survey future conditions, assess pollution sources and determine restoration opportunities.
A Steering Committee will include representatives from State and local government, the agricultural, forestry, business communities, recreational interests, residents, and the power plant will lead development of the plan.
The committee will be supported by staff from Garrett County, DNR, and other State agencies, and will be professionally facilitated through a Memorandum of Understanding with the Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology.
The most recent data confirms that the lake continues to support diverse and healthy fish, plant and wildlife populations, and is experiencing low algal levels due to low phosphorus concentrations.
Deep Creek is one of Maryland’s largest and most popular lakes, providing recreation for hundreds of thousands of residents and visitors annually.
The reservoir is owned and operated by the Maryland Park Service, with additional help and support provided by Garrett County.
source: MD DNR