Grand Lake St. Marys near Celina, Ohio is a peaceful and serene place, filled with wildlife.
Bob Sachs purchased a home there to enjoy those very things, but toxic algae blooms and fish kills have become a yearly rite of passage.
Sachs said the future of the lake, and the more than $150 million of annual revenue it brings to the local economy, hinges on state and local action, which he is satisfied to see.
"It took a disaster last year to get the state’s attention and now with the new officials, it would seem the ball is headed in the right direction," Sachs said.
Sachs is referring to the three-pronged solution to decrease the toxic blooms in the lake, reported ONN’s Harrison Hove.
They include dredging, rough fish removal and aluminum sulfate chemical treatments.
"Aluminum sulfate has been well documented and scientifically proven to lower phosphorus conditions," said Tadd Barrow of HAB Aquatic Solutions.
Those alum treatments will continue through most of June.
HAB aquatic solutions won a $3.5 million bid to place the chemical on 4,900 acres of the lake.
"We’ve got a software program that meters the product to the specified dosage level. We also use GPS guidance to ensure we drive a straight track," Barrow said.
Still, business owners like Muhammad Khokhar said the state needs to go one step further and protect businesses from any further economic loss.
"If a business can demonstrate that they have been hurt by the lake issue, they should be given assistance, for example, in the form of tax abatement," Khokhar said.
Last year, businesses were only offered low interest loans.
While Sachs remains cautiously optimistic, he said the community needs to solve the root of the issue- increased phosphorus from manure runoff on farms.
"Purveyors of the various solutions have indicated to us that until the manure stops our chances for success are remote," Sachs said.