DATE:           August 25, 2020

TO:                 Maple Lake Improvement District Members

FROM:           Mike Raiche, President

SUBJECT:    Mill Creek Culvert Lake Height Project Proposal

2021 Culvert Project Assessment -$20,000

This email is intended to keep Maple Lake LID members up to date regarding efforts to stabilize the lake level.

Since the spring of 2019 members of the Maple Lake – Lake Property Owners Association, and Maple Lake Improvement District Wright County (MLIDWC) members have been working on keeping the Mill Creek culvert that runs under Highway 55 open and flowing. This is being done in response to numerous comments/complaints from lake property owners. Many have been requesting the removal of trees, bogs and beaver dams from Mill Creek that constantly build up and impede the flow of water out of Maple Lake.

In search of a long-term solution, discussions and meetings have been taking place with both the DNR and WCSW (Wright County Soil and Water). Both are recommending the installation of a permanent structure in Mill Creek.

For some perspective, in 2019 Maple Lake water height in the spring through the fall varied as much as 16 inches.  In 2020 to date, the height has varied as much as 14 inches.

To address this issue, the MLIDWC Board is proposing a project that works with the DNR, WCSW, and an engineering firm to determine the optimal lake height and construction of a permanent structure in Mill Creek to maintain this level.

For reference, recall the level of the lake in early May when docks and boat lifts were put in the water. The board estimates the water structure will maintain a water level approximately 2 inches higher, or 1001.3 feet ASL (above sea level).  This will be the maximum height, though it will frequently be lower due to extended dry spells and evaporation.

Preliminary cost estimates are $14,000 for a DNR required engineering study to determine what the lake water level should be, and $20,000 for the actual structure. There is also a good chance that up to 20% of the project cost would be eligible for a Soil and Water grant.

The LID Directors and water quality team are reviewing available funds, and what can be allocated through LID assessments to this project, and still remain within a reasonable amount to minimize future assessments for weed control.