Update on Weed Meetings

Dear Property Owners,        August 13, 2011

We wanted to take the time to give you the updates from the last two meetings with regards to the weed issue. J

Fairview Lake Mgt Committee Meeting of Aug 4, 2011

The committee was gathered at Jim Graybill’s home at 7 p.m.  Eleven members and guests participated in a lively discussion about the lake and its weeds.  We noted that so far there has been little sign of blue-green algae.  The weed situation is far worse than last year which was bad.  Several boaters felt that all forms of boating will cease in a few weeks due weeds always on the propellers or oars.

FLPOA  President Mike Johnson and occasionally Jim Graybill have been meeting with City of Fairview officials every two weeks since the FLPOA general meeting of May, 2011.  So far, the City has talked about revising the Lake Management Agreement and wants to get more expert advice (a new study) before they do anything.  A boat tour of the lake and its weeds is scheduled for Wednesday, Aug 10 for City officials.  City of Fairview and Gresham has told Mike Johnson if they detect any herbicides in the water below our dam structure that could be traced to lake herbicide treatments, there could be sanctions against FLPOA. Also we’re told that the agricultural land downstream uses slough water to irrigate their farm land and thus a herbicide could kill their products.  Mike expressed the desire to have legal advice on these issues.  Randy Hutchinson thought he might be able to put us in touch with a lawyer.

The committee noted that so far, to our knowledge, the City of Fairview has only heard from Mike and Jim.  The committee wants to change that and will begin a large campaign to inform the more City officials that we would like their assistance in reducing the amount of weeds in the lake.  Residents are concerned about not only boating and swimming activities, but loss of property values which of course affects taxes collected by the City.

Weed management  ideas:

Jim talked about using a weed harvester which seemed to be unpopular and impractical with the group.  We don’t know where we would store the harvester, unload the weeds, dispose of the weeds, or if we could even launch the harvester at our present boat ramp.  There would be constant mowing of the weeds, but might result in a “racetrack” around the edge of the lake for weed free boating.  There are minimal restrictions in its use and is the only method that would remove nutrients from the lake that feeds the weeds and algae.

We discussed the use of herbicides again, noting the concerns of our neighbors downstream and the City of Gresham.  Maybe smaller amounts of chemical could be used around docks or to form a track for boating around the edge.  A few herbicides are fast acting and breakdown rapidly.  This needs to be explored further.  Possibly for the time period that a herbicide might be in the water below the dam, we could cover the cost of replacement water for the irrigation system.

We discussed dredging the lake to a depth of 15 feet or so to get the lake deep enough  to not let the plants grow.  The cost of this would likely be prohibitive and sediment issues would need to be resolved.

Much of our discussion concerned the use of grass carp to eat the plants.  While the grass carp have a preference for the plants we presently have in the lake, they would not likely eat many invasive plants if we had them and thus might encourage the invasive plants to flourish.  After reviewing the Oregon Dept. of Fish and Wildlife’s web page of permitting for grass carp, Jim does not believe there would be any chance of us getting a permit to introduce them here.  Please read: www.dfw.state.or.us/fish/private_ponds/docs/GCbrochure.pdf I don’t believe we can meet any of the criteria for the introduction of the grass carp.

Another resource discussed is the PSU Center for Lakes and Reservoirs.  They specifically study aquatic weed issues around the state.  We have been referred to them by Fairview and the lake manager of Oswego Lake.  Bob Scruggs volunteered to contact PSU in September if they have recommendations.

Respectively submitted by Jim Graybill, Chair of Lake Mgt Committee.

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City of Fairview

Tour of Fairview Lake

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

This week Linda Hulme (Engineer) and Lindsey Nesbitt (Senior Planner) toured Fairview Lake along with Jim Graybill and Mike Johnson. Linda is in charge of water quality issues for Fairview including the Fairview Lake Management Plan. Unfortunately, Allan  Berry (Dir. Community Development & Public Works) had to cancel at the last minute.

During this tour Linda and Lindsey witnessed firsthand the extent of the week infestation. They made observations from several different parts of the lake. Photos were taken of the weeds, the water clarity and algae along the shore. They also experienced boating on Fairview Lake as we got stuck multiple times in the weeds and had to limp back to our dock after aborting the tour.

During the tour they informed us that their office has placed multiple calls to other agencies seeking information and advice about the weeds. They are presently gathering facts. They expect to make a detailed presentation on behalf of the city during the FLPOA annual members meeting in October.

Watch for future updates on www.fairview-lake.org

FLPOA Board of Directors:

Mike Johnson, President (503 667 8461); Brenda Luna, VP (503 512 8173); Jim Dick, Treasurer (503 666 1044); Dennis Caudell (503 710 1227); Jim Graybill, Lake Management (503 667 4547)

 

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