NALMS’ Response to Recent Federal Election

Summary of NALMS’ response to recent federal election

  • The NALMS Board of Directors is working to assess how the federal election outcome may influence both lake management in the USA and the capacity of NALMS.
  • NALMS had begun the process of planning the 2018 National Water Quality Monitoring Conference (NWQMC) with our federal partners and will continue to work to assess support for the conference.
  • Currently NALMS operates at a significant deficit during single conference years (NALMS only). These losses have been offset by net gains during 2-conference years (NALMS and NWQMC).
  • NALMS’ membership must grow to support the base budget of the society. If the NWQMC does not occur, NALMS must implement significant cuts to balance the budget, as reserves can only carry the society for a few years.
  • If your membership has lapsed, please renew. If you know someone with a lapsed membership, please encourage them to renew. If you know people working in lake management that are not NALMS members, please encourage them to join.


NALMS members, Affiliates, and Corporate Partners

The NALMS Board of Directors is working to evaluate the potential impact of the results of the recent federal election on lake management. While lake management and environmental issues were not foremost in the issues discussed by the candidates for president or most congressional races, the results of the election suggest that support for many of the agencies and programs with which NALMS partners may be reduced under the incoming administration.

Of significant importance to the continued success of NALMS are the prospects for the continued federal commitment to the 2018 National Water Quality Monitoring Conference (NWQMC). Planning for this conference was approved by the NALMS Board of Directors in Banff, and the NWQMC is an important component of the NALMS 2-year budget cycle.

As was presented at the membership meeting in Banff, the NALMS financial health currently cycles significantly between single and two-conference years. During recent single conference years, there have been significant deficits (average of $104,400 in each of last 3 single conference years). During years with both an International Symposium and a NWQMC, NALMS has had budget surpluses ($71, 200 in 2012, and $3,300 in 2014, the most recently completed and audited 2-conference years). This combination has allowed NALMS to remain financially viable over 2-year periods despite the continued slow decline in membership. The loss of the NWQMC would require NALMS to make significant cuts in programs sponsored by NALMS (LakeLine, Lake and Reservoir Management, Secchi Dip in, etc.), in conference amenities and locations, and possibly NALMS’ small, but committed office staff.

The most important thing NALMS members and past members can do to ensure the continued viability of the society is to renew your membership if it is lapsed, encourage others with lapsed memberships to renew, and to encourage those that are not members to join the society. It is only through growing our member base in the short-term that NALMS will be able to break this reliance on conferences for financial viability and to continue supporting and expanding programs offered to members. Additionally, expanding the NALMS membership also expands our capacity as a difference maker on the local, regional and national scale, to promote lake and watershed management initiatives and sustainable funding for those projects.

Please review your member status and renew if it has lapsed. The importance of our work is independent of the political change brought by the elections. NALMS provides a vital service in guiding science-based management of lakes, reservoirs, and watersheds to meet the needs of society.

The society needs your support to remain strong and vital.

The board is happy to engage with you should you have concerns, opinions, or suggestions.




Frank M. Wilhelm, president
NALMS Board of Directors