LIA Monthly Members Meeting
10:00 a.m. April 2, 2016
Celina Moose Lodge
Tim Lovett welcomed everyone to the members meeting and stood for the pledge of allegiance.
Diane Bertke gave the treasurers report. Diane reported that there was a net income of $12,481.00 in the LIA account for March which now totals $46,636.
Tim Lovett talked about the Casino Night that is being held on March 19th. Tim said the event was at Romers and was co-sponsored by the Celina Lakefest Committee. At the Casino Night there was a 50/50 drawing, carnival games, hot appetizers, and a DJ amongst other activities. Any proceeds are going to help fund the fireworks at Lakefest. The turnout was light, about 100 people. We are hoping it will at least break even. Tim noted the Lakefest Committee members did great work in helping to put on the event.
Tim Lovett spoke about the 2015 Membership Drive that started April 1st and lasts until May 15. Tim said the mailing went out on or about April 1. You will receive letter in mail with return envelope, dues are $15 for individual and $25 for business. Tim noted that he looks forward to beating last year’s donation amount along with new memberships. We have about 1200 members now and the more members we get, the more effective we can be in the political arena to get support for the Lake.
Tim Lovett noted the 2nd Annual Kickoff to the Summer and 5K Color Run events will be held on June 18th on the East Bank in St. Marys. Tim said the event will feature live entertainment, food and other vendors, kids activities, cornhole and beer pong tournaments and a car show. Tim reported Lakefest Committee will be hosting the burger stand and beer will be sold all to kickoff the summer at Grand Lake St. Marys. He also spoke about the Color Run which runs in conjunction with the Kickoff event and said registration is now live online. We had about 650 participants in last year’s Color Run.
Tim Lovett noted we still need a committee chair for the Bar Stool Open for 2016.
Tim Lovett reminded the membership that the Kids Fishing Derby will be on September 7 and encouraged members to assist which they will discover is a very rewarding experience.
Tim Lovett talked about a fish tournament coming to the lake in conjunction with Brushpile Fishing and Crappie USA. The Crappie USA Tournament is being held April 15, 16. Sign up will begin on the 14th at Wright State University Lake Campus. Tim reported there are materials including schedules, information on kid’s scholarship opportunities, and brochures at the meeting and online for anyone looking for more information. Tim said the LIA is a major sponsor of the event and that many local businesses are stepping up and helping with the event and they are hearing a lot of buzz and excitement from all around the area. Tim noted that the event will be televised on WLOSN and NKTelco and folks can also live stream it from NKTelco’s website.
Paul Joseph with US Fresh Boaters Alliance was present to talk about their program on the Lake. They have significantly increased their support to boaters on the Lake each year and plan to have 22 boats on the Lake this year. Paul noted they do not do enforcement but do boating safety inspections and support ODNR’s programs on the Lake. In 2015, they provided tows to 15 boats and rescued an individual who had fallen from SeaDoo. They gave 800 rides to Lake Festival participants and assist ODNR Watercraft officers during fireworks and other events held at the Lake last year. They have teamed up with the Mercer County Sheriff’s office to provide assistance and rescue to boaters in distress on the Lake. Their members have boats on the Lake and can often be on the water within 5 minutes to provide assistance to boaters. They partner with others to provide operator licensing and perform boat safety inspections for free to the public. Part of their mission is to show the public that our Lake is still grand.
Robert Makley and Dave Shaner presented great photos they have taken from around the lake. Their photos showed what a great place the Lake is with its spectacular wildlife and scenery. When they finished their presentation to the membership of their work, Tim Lovett presented them with plaques thanking them for all their photography and contributions to the area and the LIA.
Milt Miller asked Tim Lovett to give the LRC update in his place. Tim spoke on the following points: The goal of harvesting 25 carp and implanting telemetry units has been met. All carp successfully migrated from their deposit sites after surgery. The pilot harvest is scheduled for the week of April 11. Netting will cease during April crappie tournament. The pilot should have no affect on the May ”Get the Carp Out a Here” tournament. The goal for the pilot is the removal of two semi loads of carp from the Lake. Any game fish caught during the harvest will be returned to the Lake. Many volunteers will be needed and watch for a press release closer to the date. Fishermen/women need to watch for the 18 inch telemetry antenna hanging from the carp in case they are caught. If you catch a carp with an antenna, throw the carp back into the lake.
The Prairie Creek Treatment Trains one and two are still awaiting restoration planting. We are working closely with the planter and getting the TTs pumped down so it can dry up for planting. The plans for Beaver Creek TT are very close to being finalized with excavation anticipated during the summer when that property dries up. Work on the Coldwater Creek TT is nearing completion and when the plantings in it are established, water will begin to be filtered through it.
A consultant has been hired to explore the possibility of islands in the lake. We are very early in the process.
Tom Grabow gave the Grand Lake dredging report. He thanked the Boaters Alliance for their great support in providing escort assistance when his crews move dredge pipe through the water. The pipe lengths can be up to 8000 feet long and are mostly submerged. Boaters should be on the lookout for the pipes when they are on the Lake. He noted that the dredge Brutus is ready to start dredging at Southmoor Shores next week. The dredge Hoedag will be moved to Riley Bay next week to dredge in several locations along the north shore. Tom reminded the members that the dredges can’t remove hardpan clay from areas where the Lake is shallow. The dredge Pump a Little is being repaired and should be ready in a couple of weeks to go to work at Breezewood and then Prairie Creek. Tom plans to have two dredges pumping into the Coldwater Creek Treatment Train containment area later his summer. It will be a first for the Lake to have two dredges simultaneously into one spoil area.
Tom reported that the equipment for a dewatering process is being moved into a site at Buckeye Lake for testing and evaluation in a pilot study. If it proves out, it will significantly help alleviate the problem of disposing of dredge spoils by converting it quickly into a truckable material should have economic value.
In response to a member’s inquiry, Tom responded that he does not have a schedule for putting riprap on the geotubes at Windy Point and that he hopes to get riprapping going at the Lake.
David Faler gave the Park Lake Update. David said dock fees invoices went out in March and payments are due in May. He said there is a new way to pay for the dock fees using the internet. (Directions in the mailing). The Lake level is about at pool and the gates in the dam were closed down to 3 inches on March 26th. A new shower house opened at the Park on the 24th. He reported that crappie fishing has been really good this spring and 12,500,000 perch fingerlings were released into the Lake from March 21 to March 29. The annual Lake cleanup will be on April 23rd. He noted that summer staff is being hired for Park and the boat dock at Windy Point will be repaired this year.
In response to a member’s inquiry about repairing portion of the West Bank Road in the Park, Dave said he would look into it. Another member noted the crappie fishing below the spillway has been good inquired if the dirt road along the channel could be repaired. Dave reported the road belongs to the City of Celina and they would be responsible for repairing the road. In response to an inquiry, Dave noted the 9 inch limit on crappie in the Lake does not apply to crappie in the channel.
Theresa Dirkson was introduced as the new leader of the Ag Solutions Group which will be part of the Mercer County Community Development Office. Her goals will be to find methods to effectively and economically reduce the effects of manure in the watershed, find markets for the manure, reduce phosphorus levels in fields and its runoff from fields, and get grants to support these efforts. She believes technology exists to reduce the agricultural nutrients reaching the Lake, they need to be employed effectively.
Terry Mescher gave the Ohio Dept. of Agriculture update (SWCD). He noted the distressed watershed rules remain in effect in the watershed. CNMP updates and site inspections are continuing and about 145 operations will need CNMPs approved by ODNR. The number fluctuates as operations are combined or change status. The December 15 to March 1 ban on manure spreading in the watershed has expired and manure spreading has begun. His office has been monitoring the spreading in the watershed and reminding operators of acceptable procedures.
Terry noted applications for construction and operation of new 1.7 million cage-free egg laying facility in the watershed has been filed at ODA. The applications are under review by ODA and include sections on manure management, insect control, mortality disposal, and emergency response procedures. Construction could begin in the late spring and it could be complete by the end of summer. He noted the application indicates that all of the solid manure will be brokered outside the watershed. The operation will be regulated by ODA. Terry has looked at the application and noted an overlap on land intended for disposal of egg wash fluid with another operation’s manure disposal plans. The plan is being revised to eliminate the overlap. He reported that there will be a public hearing on the applications at the Mercer County Central Services Building on April 19th at 6:30 PM with formal presentations at beginning at 7 PM. The public can make comments at the hearing and file written comments with ODA until April 26th. The mailing address is available at the ODA website. Copies of the application are available at the Soil and Water office on CD’s for review.
Tim Lovett stated that the LIA is strongly opposed to the construction of the new facility and will so state at the hearing and in writing. The LIA opposes any new animal operations in the watershed or any increases in the animal units in the watershed. The Lake’s watershed is one of the most environmentally distressed watersheds in the nation, it has the one of the highest animal units per acre in the nation, and the approval of the additional animal production facilities in the Lake’s watershed gives the appearance that fresh water quality in the streams in the watershed and throughout the State is not a priority in the State of Ohio. Tim encouraged LIA members to attend the hearing and noted that he and LIA trustee Tom Rampe will attend to oppose the approval of the applications.
Tim Lovett opened the floor for questions. A member reported that on April 14th, the weekly bass fishing tournaments will start at the Celina Eagles.
A member drew the winner of the 50/50 which was $15.
The Members Meeting concluded at 11:30 am.
Lake Improvement Association