The Lake of the Orchard Association is seeking the Nicholasville City Commission’s assistance regarding a possible solution for its long-standing storm water drainage issues.
Gene Hoten, president of the Lake of the Orchard Association, asked the city during its March 12 meeting to contribute $7,000 to $10,000 to help pay for an Ohio-based company to come down and clean the lake of storm runoff debris such as leaves and grass clippings.
Hoten said since the lake was established in 1984, storm drain runoff has caused the lake to become more and more shallow.
“The situation is concerning the fact that over the years, all the storm drainage that has come into our lake has slowly deposited leaves, grass, clippings, and what have you, to the point where the water level is anywhere from 12 to 16 inches deep,” Hoten said. “When you show the actual area of the (Lake Mingo) watershed, 70 percent of that watershed comes into our lake before it ever gets to Lake Mingo. It means we are the collector of all (the debris) that really no one can prevent from getting in.”
To combat the problem, the association has contracted with Sediment Removal Solutions of Ohio.
The association has already forked over $7,095 for geotubes, devices that dewater areas of high moisture content sludge and sediment. The total cost of the service will be between $25,045 and $38,695,¿Hoten said.
“That variance is based upon the fact on how quickly they can fill the geotubes, and it’s estimated that it will take between three to five days,” he said.
Hoten acknowledged that the storm water problem isn’t something that is easily solved, saying the city has done a good job in helping keep larger debris such as limbs from being deposited in the lake.
“The issue is, we can’t keep it out and you can’t keep it out,” Hoten said. “We have contracted with Sediment Removal Solutions of Ohio; I contacted this firm last year, and we’ve spent a lot of time going over the options that we had.”
When the lake was built in 1984, the group and the city entered into a contract which says the association is responsible for cleaning the lake, Nicholasville streets superintendent Gary Goldey said. Goldey pointed out that city has been contacted by other areas with lakes or ponds regarding storm water drainage issues.
“It clearly says the association is responsible for maintaining the lake,” Goldey said. “We have been asked in years past for help cleaning two other lakes that storm water got into, and we’ve verbally been asked to help with about two more lakes or ponds. All are owned privately, but the only difference is that there exists a contract between the city of Nicholasville and the Lake of the Orchard Association.”
Goldey also said the city is offering several thousand dollars of in-kind services for the project because once the geotubes are filled, the city is looking at making around 20 single-axle dump truck loads to haul off the sludge.
“That costs a lot of money,” Goldey said. “It’s not like we’re not offering anything. What we’re offering the folks up at the Lake of the Orchard is the same thing we offer folks with retention basins.”
The city commission did not vote on the matter on March 12, opting instead to mull it over and address it at a future meeting.