This was just received from Wetlands Club member Justin Schultz:
“If we have another big flood on this lake, is it negligence that the RKLD did not apply for state funding to improve the wicket gates in this budget cycle? It is just a question. The lake has not been at operating order for more than a few days since last September and we are getting to uh-oh levels at this point. The dam is incapable of operating at order and so I suggest it is obsolete. We can blame Mother Nature for everything or we can be prepared to meet the worst case contingencies on this gigantic watershed by making a capital investment in the improvement of the dam gates that would improve the safety and protect the interest of every user group on Koshkonong.”
Thank you for your time in reading my message.
Justin T. Shultz
Response from Brian Christianson – Chairman
It appears to me that Justin Schultz is advocating for the removal of the Indianford Dam. He says the dam is incapable of “operating at order,” so he concludes the dam is “obsolete.”
What is most insulting is Justin Schultz’s accusation that the RKLD Board is negligent in failing to apply for state funding to improve the wicket gates in this current (state) budget cycle.
He leaves the reader with the impression that he is an expert in the governor’s biennial budget process and that RKLD has failed to apply for the magic pot of free money that sits inside the State Capitol.
First, there is nothing mechanically wrong with the existing wicket gates. RKLD recently completed a DNR mandated 10-year inspection of the gate operations and the dam was found to be in fine working order.
It is a cold fact that all gates at the dam have been fully 100% open since September 9, 2016. That’s right Justin, the gates have been held wide open since last year. Perhaps the “uh-oh” you mention is your failure to understand hydrology. The dam and its gate operations only impact low water. When we have high water/flood water, the dam is passing every cubic foot of water that Mother Nature drops in the northeastern reaches of our watershed.
Second, Justin Schultz also fails to understand the DNR grant program. The budget funds those programs once every 2 years – Wisconsin has a biennial budget. So, for every Lake District in the state that began looking for DNR grants to help fund their various lake/river improvement projects last year, the DNR cannot evaluate those applications until they are funded – next year. A simple phone call to his state legislator’s office would have informed him of this fact. Justin Schultz would rather try to impugn the work and knowledge of the RKLD Board than do any lifting, study, research, on his end of things. Or, he could have simply knocked on the door of his neighbors – the private duck hunting clubs – and asked them about how the RKLD sponsored DNR Wetland Shoreline Protection Grants on their behalf, over $100,000 of “free money.”
This reply – http://rkld.org/question-website-high-winter-lakeriver-level/ – addresses the same concerns that Justin Schultz has raised above. Again, he likes to express his opinion. Sadly, his opinion is not rooted in any facts. Perhaps that it the reason why the Rock County Board Chairman recalled his appointment to the RKLD Board – Justin Schultz – removing him from our board in favor of someone who listens to the experts and then reports back to the county board free of opinions, bias, and an agenda that serves only his own.