In this Newsletter: new newsletter format, confirmation of action plan amendments, co-chair nominations, progress since May meeting, fall meeting update.
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UMGL LCC Coordinator's Corner

Hello, UMGL LCC Steering Committee and colleagues.  I hope you all have had a good summer so far.  There's still time to enjoy the long days, but it is diminishing as we head into fall - another great time of year in the Upper Midwest.  
Since our May Steering Committee meeting we've been working hard to better communicate about our efforts.  This started with our new website, and continues with this new newsletter format.  We have other communication improvements planned for the months ahead.  We hope that these advancements strengthen our connections and promote the value of our efforts.  
I appreciate your quick review and response to the revisions in the FY16 Annual Action and Budget Plan.  We had concurrence on all the proposed amendments and received several good suggestions on handling these situations in the future.  To-date all the actions and projects in the plan are on track.

Below, you will find a call for Steering Committee Co-chair nominations, an opportunity to guide charter development for our focal areas, and an update on our fall meeting.

Last week, I had the opportunity to share our history and evolution with the Plains and Prairie Potholes LCC.  Looking back, it is amazing how far we have come in 6 years time, but what really energizes me is the stage of growth we are in right now.  A new LCC Strategic Plan is nearly complete, we are improving our operations, and our efforts are finding success. Thank you for your continued leadership and commitment to a landscape conservation approach in the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes region.

-Brad Potter, Acting LCC Coordinator
Call for Steering Committee Co-chair Nominations
Jim Herkert with the Illinois DNR has been serving as LCC Steering Committee Co-chair since February, 2014 and we much appreciate his work on behalf the LCC.  Below are our operating procedures regarding LCC Steering Committee Co-chairs:

"Activities of the Steering Committee are administered by two Co-Chairs, one of which is designated by the Region 3 US Fish and Wildlife Service Regional Director.  The Co-Chairs each serve a two-year, staggered term, and may be re-elected for an unlimited number of successive terms. The Co-Chairs and Coordinators will present a slate of candidates to the Steering Committee three months before the fall Steering Committee meeting.  Elections shall take place at the fall Steering Committee meeting, with new terms beginning immediately.  Members of the Steering Committee may self-nominate, or nominate others, for the Co-Chair positions.   In the event that either Co-Chair resigns early or is otherwise unable to complete a term, a replacement will be elected as soon as possible to serve the remainder of the term, following the same procedures as for regular elections."

Jim is willing to continue to serve, but would also accept others taking on this role.  Please send your nominations to Brad Potter by Friday, September 30.  We will complete the election process at our fall meeting.
Guidance Needed - Focal Area Charter Development 
At your request, each of the focal area work groups have either discussed, or begun drafting charters.  We're looking for Steering Committee members or their alternates to help advise charter development and comment on drafts before they go to the full steering committee for review.  Workload includes a couple conference calls and time spent commenting on draft documents.  The coastal and forest work groups currently have drafts in progress and could use assistance in the near term.  Contact Brad Potter if you are interested in helping.  
Fall Steering Committee Meeting Update - We're going to Minnesota
Hold October 18-19 for our fall steering committee meeting.  We are joining the Eastern Tallgrass Prairie and Big Rivers LCC Steering Committee for a portion of the meeting.  This will be our first every joint steering committee meeting.  We are in process securing a meeting location near the Minneapolis Airport and in close proximity to Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge.  More details coming in the next month.
Next update will include a new version of the LCC Strategic Plan, a revision of our Operational Procedures for comment, and final details on the upcoming Steering Committee meeting.  Stay tuned!
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