Ohio Lake Erie Commission to Hold Quarterly Meeting in Franklin County

TOLEDO, OH - The Ohio Lake Erie Commission (OLEC) will hold its quarterly meeting on Wednesday, March 9 at 10 a.m. at the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Assembly Center West, which is located at 2045 Morse Road in Columbus. The meeting is open to the public.

During the meeting, there will be a review of the status and recent progress on commission activities, such as a review of the funded Lake Erie Protection Fund grants, current status of Balanced Growth activities and the anticipated impact of the federal Great Lakes Restoration Initiative on Lake Erie issues. Dr. Jeffrey Reutter from The Ohio State University, Ohio Sea Grant College Program will also provide an overview of Lake Erie issues.

Commission members are expected to act on the latest round of Lake Erie Protection Fund grant applications including the small grant applications for the third quarter of state fiscal year 2011.

All OLEC meetings are open to the public and include reports from the member state agencies and advisory committees followed by a public comment period. Organizations and citizens are encouraged to attend this meeting.

The commission oversees Ohio’s Lake Erie Protection Fund, which is a source of grant money for projects that benefit the Lake Erie watershed economically and environmentally. This fund is supported by Ohioans who purchase a Lake Erie license plate displaying the Marblehead Lighthouse or Toledo Harbor Lighthouse designed by Ohio artist Ben Richmond. Since 1993, more than $9 million has been raised from sales of the Lake Erie license plates.

The Ohio Lake Erie Commission was established for the purpose of preserving Lake Erie's natural resources, protecting the quality of its waters and ecosystem, and promoting economic development in the region. The director of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources serves as the commission's chairman. Additional members include the directors of the state departments of Transportation, Health, Development, Agriculture and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.