BANGOR, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - Wednesday morning, a meeting took place at the Hollywood Casino Hotel in Bangor to discuss the importance of lake conservation for the state and for waterfront property owners.

Officials say that Maine's lakes generate more than $3.5 billion in annual spending, provide more jobs than any single Maine employer, and supply drinking water to half our residents.

The meeting was hosted by Portland-based company MEREDA, or the Maine Real Estate and Development Association, whose mission is to advocate in legislature on real estate issues, and educate through conferences.

Today’s conference was to teach those who attended about LakeSmart - a free program that advises lakefront property owners about how to properly manage a lakefront property so as to keep the lake healthy and safe.

Maine Lakes Society former director and the event’s keynote speaker Maggie Shannon said, “when you think about it, water always runs downhill. Lakes are in the low places in the landscape, and so they receive whatever the weather washes into them.”

About why MEREDA is educating on LakeSmart, Bev Uhlenhake, board member, said, “MEREDA actually collaborates with a lot of different organizations throughout the state. If we know an organization that's going to be working on something that's promoting responsible development, and that's going to promote economic development for the state of Maine, we're going to work with them to see what we can do to make things better for all of us.”

For more information on LakeSmart, click here.