State Funding For Iowa Lakes Could Run Dry - Siouxland News - KMEG 14 and FOX 44

State Funding For Iowa Lakes Could Run Dry


(STORM LAKE, IA) State funding could run dry for lakes across Iowa this year. A few lakes close to Sioux City may see little to no improvements because Governor Terry Branstad now wants to spend less than one-sixth of what he'd promised.

In 2011, Governor Terry Branstad supported restoring lakes around Iowa, promising the Iowa DNR 8.6 million dollars. But now...
"The governor's proposed budget for Fiscal year 2014 was 1 million dollars. Last year we received about 6 million in funding, obviously the legislator has to finish its work. At this point, I guess we'll just wait and see what the final number ends up being." Kevin Baskins, Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
A waiting game that could leave lake restoration projects around the state at a stand still.
"You never know what's going to be proposed either by the Governor or the legislature, but it's something that we have a lot of work into to, so we can plan around different funding levels," says Baskins.
DNR had planned on spending one million dollars at Storm Lake alone including dredging work and lake improvements. Sherrill Adams, a local Bait shop owner, says the lake needs it.
"It's a big concern, and it does clean the water up, we've got cleaner water now than we ever have really. It's a good improvement if we can just keep the money coming in," says Sherrill Adams, the owner of Adam's Bait shop in Storm Lake, IA.
But if lawmakers don't budge, the Iowa DNR would spend just $250,000 at Storm Lake. The Iowa Great Lakes, instead of $200,000 in improvements, wouldn't see a dime. The same goes for Blue Lake near Onawa, a body of water that needs a fish barrier.
"When we get the common carp into our lake, they tend to stir up the sediment on the bottom and can really adversely affect the water quality in any kind of lake that we have in the state," says Baskins.
Adams' advice, the DNR and local communities need to speak up if they want something.
"There is money and the reason they're cutting all this down is someone else is hollering," he says.

so Adams says, scream louder.

The Iowa DNR will meet with legislators in Des Moines tomorrow to make its case, hoping lawmakers increase funding for lake restoration.

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