Letters to the Editor: Riverwatch group perseveres

It is July and the Addison County Riverwatch Collaborative is in the middle of another season of water quality monitoring. Our largely volunteer organization has been collecting water samples on six area rivers and streams (Otter Creek, Middlebury River, New Haven River, Lemon Fair, Little Otter Creek and Lewis Creek) for more than 20 years. Our data is used by municipalities, landowners, the state and a number of organizations concerned with water quality. 
In the midst of sampling, we have much to be grateful for. Our March training was overflowing with citizens, new and experienced, interested in volunteering to collect samples. We could not accomplish what we do without the interest, dedication, and skill of our volunteer samplers. The Addison County Regional Planning Commission provides us space for equipment storage, meetings, and sampling day check-in, as well as technical expertise and assistance, all of which are of tremendous support. 
Most importantly, the citizens of 10 Addison County towns have voted to provide us financial support. This stable source of income supports everything from equipment, to annual reports, to Water Quality Chats, to our part-time managing director. We are grateful to the towns of New Haven, Ripton, Ferrisburgh, Cornwall, Weybridge, Salisbury, Lincoln, Vergennes, Bristol, and most recently, Middlebury for their financial support of our efforts, and interest in water quality. 
On the first Wednesday of the month, through September, in the early morning, keep a lookout for teams of folks, with cooler and pole on our area rivers, collecting water samples. Or, on a hot summer day, check out one of our informational signs at your favorite swimming hole, or check the latest posting of our sampling results online. If you are interested in additional information, you can find us at the ACRPC website. Again, our appreciation and thanks to volunteers, ACRPC, and the residents of Addison County. 
The Board of Addison County Riverwatch Collaborative
President Heidi Willis, Vice President/Secretary Richard Butz, Treasurer Deb Healey, Technical Advisor Kristin Underwood, Managing Director Matt Witten, Louis Dupont, Barb Otsuka and Beth Eliason
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