COLUMBUS – State Reps. Susan Manchester, R-Waynesfield, and Craig Riedel, R-Defiance, announced the release of funds Monday for new dredge equipment for Grand Lake St. Marys.
The Department of Natural Resources will receive $83,395 to replace dredge equipment that has been in operation on the lake for the past 21 years.
“This is a critical replacement for the lake,” said Manchester. “This updated equipment is needed to help keep the lake healthy.”
Over the past several years the dredge has been less productive due to failing parts. These funds will be used to replace major functions of the dredge to include the electrical, hydraulic and computer hardware.
“These improvements are not only vital in advancing the lake’s natural habitat, but also protecting a major economical attraction to western Ohio,” said Riedel.
Grand Lake St. Marys over the past decade has been plagued by dangerous algae blooms that have affected the water quality and aquatic animal life. The addition of upgraded dredging equipment will help with water quality by removing phosphorus that has built up in the sediments on the bottom of the lake.
The lake was originally constructed as a feeder reservoir for the Miami-Erie Canal. Today, it is one of the region’s top recreational attractions, offering boating, camping and swimming opportunities.