For that paycheck, I’ll learn my ‘TMDL’, ‘NDEP’ and ‘LTBMU’ |

For that paycheck, I’ll learn my ‘TMDL’, ‘NDEP’ and ‘LTBMU’

Andrew Pridgen

Dear Sir/Madam: My name is Andrew Pridgen and I am very interested in meeting with you about a recent job posting I found on American Planning Associations ( and

To preface, I am very concerned about the overall – PATHWAY – of the region; including everything that is going to happen here in the FUTURE. … I am a forward-thinking person who has a VISION for what the area can become over the next TWO DECADES.

That said, I am very eager to become the Pathway 2007 project manager – you know one that pays $125,000 per year. Jackpot!

In the job description you used the word “team” a half-dozen times, including three times in one sentence:

“Coordinates the Pathway Management Team and the joint agency resource management core team and planning core team.”

Right on! Since I am on a men’s league hoops team, a rec center soccer team and was voted most-improved of my eighth grade Pop Warner team, I can say with certainty that I am pretty qualified to join your team.

I guess you could say I’m a team player to the core.

Someone like me, who is used to working with team-oriented people, also knows he’ll be getting plenty of help … which I’ll need to decipher sentences like this:

“Pathway 2007 is a multi-agency planning process that coordinates the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) Threshold and Regional Plan Update, the United States Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit (USFS/LTBMU) Plan Update, the development of the Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board (Lahontan)/Nevada Division of Environmental Protection (NDEP) Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL), and local government plan updates.”

Whoa. I had to read that like three times and then forward it on to my boss to ask her what it meant – what a mouthful. I had no idea that TMDL (*the maximum amount of a pollutant that can be discharged into a water body from all sources -point and nonpoint- and still maintain water quality standards) formed its own agency along the lines of the Forest Service, Lahontan and NDEP.

Boy, do I have a lot to learn.

But learning on the job is one of my strong suits … especially for something that pays well into six figures – let’s just say that’s a little more than I make now, which is why I’m writing you this cover letter from work.

That’s right, I’m so eager to get your job, I’m jeopardizing mine … think about that kind of dedication before you send me back your rejection form letter.

I can see from your job description that “desire” is a big thing for you -and I think I could really get into having that kind of passion in the workplace:

n Knowledge of environmental planning is desired. (Yeah, sure – I’m all over that … but I wish you’d explain your needs in a little bit broader terms.)

n Knowledge of adaptive management systems is desired. (Adaptive management systems … yeah, I’ll pretend I know what that means – you do.)

Albeit I had a little problem with this one:

n Must be present at Tahoe during the work week.

…I won’t be able to live in the basin for anything less than $150k a year – but we can talk.

Thank you for your careful review of my cover letter and qualifications. I look forward to meeting with you sometime soon and discussing all that I desire.

– Andrew Pridgen is news editor of the North Lake Tahoe Bonanza in Incline Village.

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