Wildwood Lake, Wolverine, Michigan

Presented by the Wildwood Valley Property Owners Association and Club

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Click here to download the lake treatment schedule for 2016

Click here to download the June 2015 Wildwood Lake Management Report from Restorative Lake Sciences

LAKE UPDATE 

May 4, 2015 

 
Since my last report on April 20th the lake has risen 4" an we are now 35" below the spillway.  Maybe we can make a little more headway with the rain we are projected to receive this week.  Also this weekend about 25 to 30 large bass were spawning by the dam.  That's a great sign.

As far as the dam goes, we have received our "Notice of Violation" letter from the DEQ,  At this point they are still investigating and have asked for our response to more than 17 questions.  It appears some property owners have called the DEQ to complain about how we (the WVPOAC) are handling the lake affairs.  We are currently putting together our letter as requested as it is due by May 18th.  I will keep you posted on any further communication we receive from the DEQ.

Also you will be receiving (via snail mail) a notice of a special meeting I am calling to discuss with ALL lake front property owners, what went wrong during the draw down and what we are going to do moving forward.  The meeting will be held at the clubhouse on the Saturday before our regularly scheduled Memorial Day meeting (May 23rd) at NOON.  Thanks in advance for your attendance and support.
 
Lastly, thanks to Dave Dohring, Bill Staples, Bob Chadwick, Lyn Fleishman and Blair Wickman for taking advantage of the inadvertent lower lake level and putting the clubhouse dock in for our use.  Hopefully the water will reach the dock soon.  Again you also might want to take advantage of the lake level to cleanup the lake bottom in front of your property.

Moving forward,

Jim Nihls

I  just wanted to take a minute and update you on the status of our lake and dam.


DAM INSPECTION

On Friday April 17th the tri-annual dam inspection was performed by Russ Beaubien from the Spicer Group.  I received a preliminary report last night and while the official report won't be submitted for approximately two weeks, the good news is that there is no major issues, the dam will be rated satisfactory to the MDEQ and the minor issues that have to be addressed are not deemed urgent in nature.

Another part of the inspection focused on probable causes for the dam gate valve not being able to be closed which allowed the lake level to exceed the permitted draw down level.   One potential cause is that the severe weather created significant ice buildup on  the face of the dam and that ice attached to the control shaft, as the lake level lowered it caused the ice to put a binding force on the control shaft that prevented movement of the shaft up or down.

However, while down in the lower sump where the gate valve is located, Russ found a 2' long tree limb floating that was approximately 2" in diameter and on the left side of the gate he noticed a roundish brown shape that he determined matched the broken end of the tree limb floating in the sump.  It is believed that the limb prevented the gate from closing and that the pressure from repeated attempts to close the valve eventually crushed the limb allowing the gate to close almost completely.  It is most likely that a combination of the ice binding the shaft and the tree limb stuck under the gate prevented proper operation of the gate valve.

CURRENT STATUS

-With the current rain fall the lake level has risen to within 3' 3" of the spillway. 
-There was a considerable fish kill and while we don't know how much is attributed to the lower water levels, the attached DNR report states some can be attributed to the severe weather the state experienced last winter.  The DEQ fisheries agents have reviewed the lake.
-There is a minimal flow going through the dam  to Lance Lake as required by the DEQ.
-We will be issued a violation of our draw down permit by the DEQ but have not received it as of this writing.

GOING FORWARD

I don't mean to down play the situation but we are where we are.  The process of lowering the lake has worked very well for the last several years since we started our Lake Management Plan but as we found out the process is in fact broken.  I am the President of the Association and it is my responsibility to assure that going forward this situation will not happen again and that is my commitment to you.  I will gladly accept responsibility for what happened, but at this stage placing blame, weather it be me, the lake committee or the folks that knew we were surpassing our limit and kept quiet does not do any thing constructive or fill the lake any faster.  Once again nobody feels worse about what took place than me and it will be fixed.

On the positive side, you may want to take advantage of this inadvertent lowering of the lake to clean the lake bottom in front of your property.

Stay tuned,

Jim Nihls



March 14, 2015
 
Yesterday I was notified that there has been an issue with the dam gate not closing and that the lake was down between 5 and 6 feet.   Blair contacted Russ Beaubien from the Spicer Engineering Group who came to Wolverine to review the dam today.

Bob Chadwick and John Moore were at the dam to meet with Russ and while waiting were actually able to close the gate and stop the water flow.  Russ checked the dam and stated all is working well and that he felt the problem was a frozen mechanism.   The DEQ dam safety group was notified and a message was left for Scott at the DEQ Gaylord office to inform him of the issue and what has been done to correct it. 

In light of the severe cold temperatures we experienced this year and the effect it had on the dam mechanics, we will be reviewing our drawdown process and making revisions prior to the next drawdown this fall.

Many thanks to Bob, John and Russ for their work today.

Thank you,
Jim Nihls

 

The Special Assessment District Public Hearing was held on October 12, 2014 at the WVPOAC club house. The Lake Management Plan Assessment will be $147 per lot per year for the next 8 years. Thank you for all your support and we thank the Township Board for all of their work and support.

WVPOAC Board

 

Thank you everyone for your comments and concerns, we appreciate all of them.

All this board and past boards have done are things to improve the lake and surrounding area (e.g. roads, dam maintenance, dam replacement and LMP).  That said, we must note that these projects could not have been done without approval of the membership and the appropriate agencies (Cheboygan County, DNR, DEQ, Fisheries Agencies etc).  This eight year Lake Management Plan continuation is no different, all appropriate agencies approved the final plan. There is no plan to increase the assessment in eight years -- we do not even know what the issues will be in eight years, just as we have changed the plan over the last five years to meet the every changing needs of the lake and property owners (5 years ago we were treating Eurasian Milfoil, now due to the changes in the lake and input from property owners we are treating Eurasian Milfoil as well pondweeds, watershield and lily pads to name a few).  All of this treatment has been approved by the appropriate agencies. We are also performing an aeration treatment study in two areas of our lake (one represents the worst muck and one represents the typical muck areas of the lake).  This study is for three years ending next October, at that time it will be determined whether we keep leasing the equipment or remove it based on the scientific data presented.

We received a letter from our Lake Manager last January outlining two different potential programs (one reflecting the absolute most we could do to improve the lake quality for a cost of $393 per lot and one that would continue the type of treatment we have been doing for the last 5 years at a cost of $147), the WVPOAC board recommended the latter to the membership at the May meeting and it passed unanimously. We presented this to the Nunda Township Board at their June meeting and they moved forward with the Special Assessment District (SAD) currently being discussed.

On another note, the former LMP assessment is over this year so that $95 will not be on the tax bill this year, this is the last year for the dam assessment, and all road assessments are complete, so this SAD, if it passes will be assessed at $147 per year.

We will continue to communicate information through our membership meetings (open to all), Restorative Lake Sciences newsletter (sent to all riparians on the Nunda Township tax roles), our WVPOAC newsletters sent to members, on our website (http://www.wildwoodlake.info/) and posted on the bulletin board outside the clubhouse.

Again thank you for all the feedback.  The results of the opposition to the SAD will be reported at the Nunda Township meeting tonight.
WVPOAC Board

 
The Nunda Township Attorney, Tim MacArthur and Nunda Township Assessor, Clarkston Most presented the results of the opposition to the Wildwood Lake Management Plan.

Total acres equals 116.2857
20% of the total equals 23.25714
Total acres of signed opposition was 19.0129

There were several notices returned to the township from the post office, so Clarkston stated if we assumed they all opposed it would add up to 22.0699, which is less than the 20% of 23.25714, so the opposition to the Special Assessment District failed..

The Nunda Township Board voted to proceed with the Wildwood Lake Management Plan Special Assessment District 14-01.  The next hearing will be on October 12, 2014 at 12 PM (Noon) at the WVPOAC clubhouse.

For information on the aeration system being tested in the lake go to the following web site:

www.clean-flo.com/articles/lake-aeration

Click Here to download the Gem Lakes Report (2008)

 

Happy Labor Day,

Just in case you missed the Semi-Annual meeting yesterday I thought I would update you on Saturdays Special Assessment District meeting for out Lake Management Plan that the Township Board conducted at our clubhouse.

Sadly, there were some folks soliciting letters of opposition based on gross misinformation.  As a result, many letters were submitted to the Township opposing our Lake Management Plan and the Special Assessment District.

While we won't know the official results until the next Township monthly meeting which is a week from Tuesday, we do know that if the opposition did in fact get 20.1% of the lake front owners lot square footage to sign those letters, the Special Assessment District proceedings will be halted and our lake fund will be insufficient to treat the lake next year.

There are other avenues for us to pursue if that happens and we will keep you posted via e mail as soon as we know the results of our initiative at the Nunda Township Board meeting on September 9th.

Stay tuned,

Jim