The tornado that hit our community on Tuesday seemed to be the worst of several weather events that we’ve seen in recent memory. The damage was so bad along the north shore of the Lake that Ron Descombes and I made the decision to close the Lake for boating for the remainder of the that day and close the north arm (from the dam to Big Rock Bay) for the next day. We have closed the Lake to skiing in the past due to high water, but 30 minutes after the storm passed, the sun was shining, and the sky was blue. Several members questioned the decision and have asked for an explanation. We had numerous reports of boats and docks floating loose. One caller estimated that there were as many as 50 kayaks floating around unmanned. Docks and boats were up on the shore, flipped upside down and under trees. A few docks were sunk and underneath other docks. The Operations Crew was working to get the lake road cleared and it was apparent that we were not going to be able to evaluate the damage to the docks until sometime on Wednesday. The decision was made to minimize any additional damage to docks from boat wake and to prevent boaters from hitting dock debris (such as metal roof sections) and water toys that were strewn all over the water and are very difficult to see. Let me just say that this is not a decision that was made lightly. We all love to enjoy boating as often as we can. Decisions like this are made strictly in the interest of safety. We apologize for any inconvenience.
As of this writing, Water Patrol has issued over 150 citations for no stickers on boats or no Lot and Block or registration plates on docks. As the person being responsible for communicating the need for these items, the number of these violations is staggering to me. Not only does it cause the offending homeowner unnecessary grief, the hidden costs in paperwork and postage is paid for by every single homeowner that pays dues. Some members have commented that it seems punitive to write citations for this type of violation. At times like this when boats and docks have been misplaced by Mother Nature, it is essential that we know who they belong to. Please inspect your docks annually (or more often than that) to be sure that they are compliant.
Finally, with all the dock work going on, it is important to point out that docks cannot be taken and stored at Goat Hill without permission. A permit is required, and it is for temporary storage only. Non-permitted docks and docks left after the permit expires will be removed and destroyed.
Submitted by: Jan T. Olson – Executive Director
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