Board Recommends Leaving New Dam & Spillway As Is (AUDIO)

The new Beaver Lake Dam & Spillway under construction in 2011.
The new Beaver Lake Dam & Spillway under construction in 2011.
JASPER (NNDC) – It appears the water level at Beaver Lake will stay where it is!

The Jasper Utility Services Water Committee Monday morning voted to recommend to the utility services board to no rebuild the dam and spillway in an effort to raise the water level.

Residents and cabin owners at the lake have complained the water level of the lake was as much as 10-12 inches lower than it was before the new dam and spillway were built three years ago to meet new state and federal flood control standards.

The lake is owned by the City of Jasper and is the city’s backup water source behind Patoka Reservoir. Rick Stradtner, who is a member of the water committee is also the utility services board president. He says the utility board is responsible solely for the dam and the backup water supply for the City of Jasper. He says the consensus in today’s decision was whether or not trying to raise the lake for the recreational users of the lake was being fiscally responsible for the more than 8,800 water ratepayers of the city…

Beaver Lake has never been used as a water source (backup or otherwise) for the city since Patoka Lake was built in the late 1970s.

Bids to rebuild the dam and spillway in an attempt to raise the water level were between $334,400 (Krempp Construction of Jasper) and $532,000 (Force Construction of Columbus).

Stradtner also pointed out the city just approved a 17% water rate increase and a more than $2 million water line replacement project planned along Newton Street as being reasons not to ask ratepayers to pay for a rebuilt dam and spillway at Beaver.

Stradtner also says the new dam and spillway were built to exact specifications to meet the new mandates and was inspected upon completion by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and by an outside private engineering firm…

The utility services board will take the water committee’s recommendation under consideration when it meets a week from tonight.