“We finally have some good dam news,” Mayor Deb Nolan told the Manawa Common Council at its July 16 meeting.
Everything is ready for the drawdown to begin Aug. 1, with the dam repairs to begin around Sept. 1.
The water level will be dropped four-tenths of a foot per day until it reaches the predetermined level needed for dam repairs.
The 30-day public hearing was waived and the loan from the State of Wisconsin Board of Commissioners of Public Lands has been approved in the amount of $200,000-$400,000, City Clerk Cheryl Hass said.
“Everything is approved for us to go ahead,” she said.
Also, a permit is not needed for dam repairs, according to a phone call received from Tom Plante, a consultant for North American Hydro. Hass reported that the DNR returned the $500 permit fee they previously had requested. The check was returned because the Manawa Mill Pond drawdown is being conducted for dam repair purposes. The Manawa dam is FERC regulated. The DNR does not have regulatory authority over the drawdown being conducted for the repair of the dam.
Hass reported that the DNR returned the $500 permit fee they previously had requested.
“They said they shouldn’t have charged us,” Hass said.
According to the DNR, the Snuffbox, Round Pig Toe and Elf Toe mussels are located further downstream than first anticipated. The mussels are still a concern though, and the DNR is still concerned about their protection. The city still needs to take precautions to protect the mussels during the drawdown and may have to relocate them.
The PFMA study will take place on Aug. 7 at the Manawa Municipal Building. This one-day environmental study will involve looking at old records and photos of the dam.