Debate continues on Lake Wausau drawdown - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Debate continues on Lake Wausau drawdown


It was a heated meeting Wednesday night in Wausau, all over the drawdown proposal for Lake Wausau.

Wednesday night, the Lake Wausau Association held it's annual members meeting taking the time to bring in a panel of experts to answer questions on the proposal.

"I'm concerned about the environmental aspects as well as the recreational," said Brenda Purdy, who owns a house on the lake.

The dam in Rothschild needs repairs, because of that they're draining the lake several feet. It is supposed to start September 12, four inches at a time, but that's still up in the air.

"They need to move forward with it get, it done," aid Lake Wausau Association board member Holly Kohl. "As Domtar stated tonight hopefully it won't have to happen for years to come."

The proposal for the drawdown went to the government for approval, but after backlash from some users of the lake it's taken longer to make a decision.

"Right now they're reviewing the public comments that were made and there were very many public comments, so it's taking them a long time to get through them," said Kohl.

Those comments came partially from duck hunters who will be greatly affected by the drawdown and want it moved to the spring. Experts said moving it to spring would have a greater impact on spawning.

Experts said there were several different factors they took into account and fall remains the best time to fix the dam.

"It's based on the habitat, it's based on the vegetation, it's based on the safety of the dam workers," said Kohl.

Experts said the drawdown would be in place until mid-November to keep the impact minimal.

They're hoping to have an answer by Monday as to whether or not they can go forward with the drawdown then.

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