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Water Quality Specialist begins job; first task AIS

BY Sarah smith

Hubbard County will be getting special expertise in its war against aquatic invasive species.

On April 1, Nate Sitz began his new position as Water Quality/Resource Specialist for the Soil and Water Conservation District.

Although not a county employee, Sitz will coordinate battle plans for the county’s war on AIS.

“We’re looking for 20 to 25 inspectors so our total number of hours has increased,” Sitz said of hiring watercraft inspectors to patrol key public access points throughout the county.

In 2012, the SWCD funded, through various grants and contributions, 4,700 hours of inspections.

This year there’s funding for 6,000 hours.

Sitz will supervise the inspectors. Two-thirds of his time will be spent coordinating the AIS program, said supervisor Julie Kingsley.

The remaining third will be spent administering programs under a stormwater erosion grant.

Sitz is a 2003 graduate of Park Rapids Area High School. He received a bachelor of arts degree from Concordia College in 2006, then received a bachelor’s of science degree from Stevens Point, Wis., where he studied environmental issues.

Applications for watercraft inspectors can be filed until April 10.

Sarah Smith

Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.

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