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High water levels on LaBelle, Boyer lakes to be discussed

A public informational meeting to discuss high water issues on LaBelle and Boyer lakes in western Becker County is set to take place this Monday, Aug. 31, at the Lake Park City Center in Lake Park.

The purpose of the meeting is for the Buffalo-Red River Watershed District board of managers to determine if there is interest in continuing with a project to construct an outlet for those lakes.

BRRWD Administrastor Bruce Albright said Friday that last fall, residents of LaBelle Lake, northeast of Lake Park, contacted the Buffalo-Red River Watershed District (BRRWD) offices to discuss their high water concerns.

An outlet study for the lake was completed. In July, the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) and Becker County requested that the BRRWD look at establishing an outlet for Boyer Lake as well.

"The two are inter-related," Albright said. "We've combined both of those projects and are looking at making one outlet for LaBelle and Boyer lakes."

As spelled out in the meeting notice sent out to landowners by BRRWD Engineer Erik Jones, Boyer Lake is completely landlocked, while the existing outlet on LaBelle Lake sends water to a landlocked area.

The Becker County Highway Department and MnDOT have needed to add riprap protection on both County-State Aid Highway 9 and U.S. Highway 10 at various times, to protect against erosion. Severe erosion has also occurred on the lakes themselves.

Becker County Commissioner Barry Nelson, who will be in attendance at the meeting, said it's a chance for residents to raise their concerns and questions about the project directly with BRRWD representatives.

Proposed costs and potential outside funding assistance will also be reviewed, Nelson added.

"The board wants to hear what people think -- is this a project they still want to see completed?" Albright said, noting that the board will also review a possible timeframe for completion of the project.

The meeting, which begins at 7:30 p.m. Monday in the Lake Park City Center, is open to the public. The center is located along County Road 7, north of Highway 10 in Lake Park. For more information, please call Erik Jones at 701-237-5065 or Bruce Albright at 218-354-7710.

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 16 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Lake Park-Audubon School Board. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.

(218) 844-1454