|Home||News||Road Assoc/Islands||Merchandise||Meetings||LSLA||Loonacy||Resources||Contact Us|
Water Level Information
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Recently the Little Sebago Lake Association received a letter from a member who was
very concerned about the water levels on the lake. Below is a narrative of some of the
concerns and constraints our dam keeper must adhere to.
In 1982 the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) established guidelines for
the operation of the Little Sebago Lake dam and every adjustment to the level of our
lake must be compliant with the DEP guidelines. Twelve hundred plus home owners
(not just 550 dues paying members of the LSLA) can potentially be held liable for non
compliance. This is a sobering responsibility to know that action or inaction may cause a
neighbor on Little Sebago Lake or down stream harm.
The Little Sebago Lake Association in 2006 completed a complex, time consuming, and
expensive process to obtain a permit to dredge the lower narrows. The DEP permit was
very concise in what it allowed our contractor to do and when he could do it. The 140
page permit allowed the dredging to be done in February of 2007 or February 2008.
When the conditions did not allow the project to go forward in 2007, there was just one more window in 2008 before the permit expired. To maximize our opportunity for a
successful dredge in February 2008 the dam was opened 13 days earlier than the DEP
set date of October 15, 2007. The dredge project cost the members of the LSLA over
$18,000 and the success of the project was directly proportionate to the water level at
the time the dredging was done. Getting the lake as low as possible meant getting the
most for our $18,000. Weather conditions were wet in the fall/winter of 2007 and we
were only able to get the lake down 16? rather than the 24? that would have maximized our investment but acting 13 days early made a difference. The decision to open the dam 13 days early was allowed by the DEP.
On May 2, 2008 the dam was opened to lower the lake in anticipation of a major storm
that was heading our way and causing widespread flooding throughout the Midwest.
The lake was lowered 5? below our summer level when the storm came to Maine .
Fortunately for us, the storm tracked further west than predicted, and we in southern
Maine got little rain. This is the same storm that flooded Fort Kent, Maine under 2 feet of
water! The dam was closed immediately after the storm. Weather records will verify
that May and June of 2008 were record setting for lack of rain, so Little Sebago Lake
remained 6? below our summer level until late June rains allowed us to recover.
Little Sebago Lake is a 1898 acre body of water and the water level cannot be changed
instantly. It requires diligence, expertise and experience to maintain the water levels
within the DEP guidelines and the methods used have not changed in the past 25
years. While the number of lake residents has increased and the shoreline has
changed, our dedicated volunteers do their best to maintain a safe, environmentally
responsible, DEP compliant water level.
Home | Road Assoc/Islands | Merchandise | Meetings | LSLA | Loonacy | Resources | Contact Us |
|www.littleSebagoLake.com||Copyright© 2011 - Little Sebago Lake Association|