November 12, 2009
Lake Hartwell PCB Settlement public meeting scheduled Nov. 17 in Anderson County
The Georgia Department of Natural Resources, S.C. Department of Natural Resources, S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control, United States Army Corps of Engineers and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service want your feedback about how to spend the remaining Lake Hartwell PCB settlement funds from the Schlumberger Technology Corporation.
A public meeting will be held Nov. 17 from 6-9 p.m. at the Anderson Civic Center. The public meeting on Nov. 17 will include a brief introduction to the Draft South Carolina Recreational Fishing Compensation Plan at 6:15 p.m. and at 7:15 p.m. Following the presentations the public can visit informational booths on each of the projects listed in the plan to get additional information or to ask project specific questions. Residents are also asked to provide input by taking an online survey, available through Dec. 6, 2009. Videos and a detailed report about the different settlement project options can be found online.
The remaining settlement funds must be spent on projects that compensate the public for losses of recreational fishing services that occurred as a result of the contamination. Funds must be used to create opportunities for the public to harvest fish that are not subject to fish consumption advisories, enhance the recreational fishery of Lake Hartwell, 12-Mile Creek and the surrounding area and implement projects designed to improve the habitat and natural resources.
The potential Lake Hartwell projects include:
- Fish Habitat Enhancement
This includes the use of larger wood debris such as stumps to create fish habitat. Installation of gravel to provide spawning substrate for a variety of species and aquatic vegetation installed to provide and enhance cover in nursery areas. The $2.8 million plan would take fully 10 years to implement.
- Hartwell Fishing Access and Shoreline Improvements
Six to eight recreation areas are under consideration for improvements which would include fishing piers, restrooms and improved parking areas. The plan would cost $1.1 million.
- Tailrace Fishing Pier
Additional funds would be utilized to enhance the facility. The pier, currently under construction, will provide 500 feet of shoreline access along the Hartwell Tailrace. The project will also provide access to areas of the Tailrace off-limits since the 9-11 terror attacks. The current request to support the project is $300,000.
- Green Pond Event Center
Anderson County has proposed to construct a large fishing events facility. If funded the current design would include approximately 150 car/trailer spaces, 50 car only spaces, tournament weigh-in area, courtesy dock and restroom. The facility would be designed for large fishing events on the South Carolina side of Lake Hartwell. The plan calls for $1.5 million for design and construction.
- Off-site Recreational Fishing
This project would provide access and enhancements up to nine impoundments in the Lake Hartwell area. These improvements would include fishing piers, fish stocking and pond fertilization. The project would operate approximately 20 years at $2.3 million.
- Unfunded Projects
Easley Central Dam removal – The Lake Hartwell Natural Resource Trustees have not yet received a proposal from any entity willing to remove this dam.
Water Education and Environmental Center – The $7 million Center would tell the story of water and the fishery. While the Trustees feel this is a worthwhile concept it does not appear to fit within the scope of the settlement and does not qualify for use of the recreational fishery injury funds. As the project moves forward there may be amenities associated with the Center that could provide some appropriate compensation for the recreational fishing injury.
Public input and survey results will be used to help guide the allocation of funds to the recreational fishery projects.
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