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Watershed steward named for Seneca, Keuka lakes

Thanks to a state grant, Seneca and Keuka lakes now have a full-time steward to monitor and protect the watershed that serves both lakes.

Ian Smith has been hired as the steward with funds included in the 2018-19 state budget. He will work out of an office at the Finger Lakes Institute on South Main Street.

Smith will work with the Seneca Watershed Intermunicipal Organization, chaired by Geneva Town Supervisor Mark Venuti. SWIO represents 40 municipalities in five counties that span the Seneca Lake watershed.

He also will work on implementing the Nine Element Watershed Plan developed by local governments and Seneca and Keuka Lake associations.

Keuka Lake drains into Seneca Lake, making it part of the Seneca Lake watershed. The two lakes contain about half of all the fresh water within the 11 Finger Lakes.

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