Tuesday , 11 May 2021

Province open to removing the weir in Moose Lake, open house upcoming, says Reeve

A public hearing on removing the weir in Moose Lake is upcoming, said Reeve Greg Sawchuk.

On The Morning After, Sawchuk said the M.D. had recently received a letter from the province saying they would consider removing the weir to combat high water levels.

“This is going back probably a year and a half ago. A study was conducted, from that study, they came back and presented to council that removal of the weir, removal of the beaver dams, but also removal of reeds and marshlands would lower the level of Moose Lake,” said Sawchuk.

“Before that can take place we have to come back to the community and have a public open house or at least consultation with the public on that one. I know that in talking to residents it is divided. Some would be for it. Some are against. But when it comes right down to it, the weir was put in originally for a political decision. In this case, over the years it has changed the actual dynamics of that Moose River. It will come up for conversation and I hope a lot of people attend that meeting when it’s held.”

When flooding from the lake became a major concern in 2017, the M.D. did host an open house on July 18 which sparked the request to the province to remove or modify the weir.

They also requested disaster relief for those affected by the heavy downpours and rising water levels in the lake, which was rejected on Sept. 2017.

The weir issue has sat on the Minister’s desk for many months following that request, said Sawchuk.

“They couldn’t jump right to the removal of the weir. They were aware of the high water levels and the implications for landowners around the lake. It’s just taken some time to get that decision.”

Sawchuk added that the M.D. has been removing beaver dams but knows they have a difficult time getting the green light to remove reeds and marshlands.

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.