Weed cleanup at Lake George to continue in spring

2013-10-12T19:15:00Z 2013-10-12T21:22:06Z Weed cleanup at Lake George to continue in springDeborah Laverty deborah.laverty@nwi.com (219) 762-1397, ext. 2223 nwitimes.com

HOBART | An aquatics company hired by the city to treat noxious vegetation in Lake George will return in the spring, officials said.

"We'll start out very early, in either April or May, targeting curly leaf then duckweed," George Balis said.

Balis is the Midwest regional manager for Clarke, an Illinois-based mosquito control and aquatics company hired by the city to treat noxious vegetation in Lake George.

Balis was introduced to the public at an Aug. 14 Lake George homeowners meeting hosted by Mayor Brian Snedecor.

Crews from Clarke began treatment in late August of two types of weeds after receiving permission from the Department of Natural Resources.

Areas that received the initial herbicide treatment included the west and south ends of the lake near the Wisconsin Street Bridge and the bayou on the west side north of the Third Street Bridge, Balis said.

Clarke crews returned in September to do a followup survey of work already done and to consider additional treatment.

"It got later in the season and some things had stopped growing, so we knew they wouldn't absorb the treatment," Balis said

Due to ecological reasons and certain restrictions from the Department of Natural Resources, Clarke decided to stop treatment in the fall and return in the spring.

"The lake is a large body of water and we wished we could have done another treatment," Balis said.

The two types of weeds that were addressed in the initial treatment were coontail and Eurasian watermilfoil.

 Dredging of Lake George is also something the city is considering in the future, Snedecor said.

"We've already started to talk about it. The lake is filled in by 1 1/2 to 2 feet, and we will have to dredge and get it on maintenance," Snedecor said.

The last time the lake was dredged was in 2000 under former Mayor Linda Buzinec.

The dredging project in 2000 took six months to complete and cost nearly $2.5 million.

The money for the dredging project came from a combination of state grant money and park bond funds.

For any future dredging project, the city will have to go through a permitting process and also seek grants to fund it, Snedecor said.

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