LETTER – Governor signs Bucco bill preserving Lake Hopatcong

Gov. Christie today signed legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Anthony M. Bucco to preserve and maintain Lake Hopatcong. The new law (S2389/A4097) dedicates $500,000 annually for the upkeep of the state’s largest freshwater lake.

“Lake Hopatcong is a powerful economic engine with a 38-mile shoreline,” said Bucco (R-Morris), a long-time advocate for state assistance to ensure Lake Hopatcong remains a recreational and environmental treasure. “Protecting the Lake and the millions of dollars of revenue generated each year from vacationers, boaters and recreational fishermen from across the state and nation has always been a top priority for me.”

Also sponsored by Assemblymen Parker Space and Jay Webber, and Assemblywomen BettyLou DeCroce and Gail Phoebus, the bill rededicates money from license fees required to operate power boats on non-tidal waters to the newly established Lake Hopatcong Fund. The money will be used by the Lake Hopatcong Commission for maintenance, management and enhancement of the lake.

“Boating and fishing on the lake have been threatened in recent years by persistent weed growth that has overwhelmed many areas.  Low water levels from sedimentation and droughts, like the one that disrupted the boating season in 2015, have also plagued the lake in recent years.” Bucco said. “This funding is crucial to ensure that people will be able to enjoy Lake Hopatcong for many years to come.”