Lake Lowering Worries Park and Marina Owner
John Fayhee is concerned about how low the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers might decide to lower the water level of Lake Shelbyville in Illinois this winter as drought conditions persist throughout the Midwest, the Decatur Herald & Review reported.
Damage to boats and docks could be devastating for businesses that rely on the lake, said Fayhee, whose family has owned and operated the Sullivan Marina and Campground since 1994 on the northeast end of the lake near Sullivan.
“The alarm bells are starting to ring that it is likely going to happen,” Fayhee said. “I’d want them to hold it where it is now and not go below the normal winter water pool. We can’t survive with a minimum amount of water.”
The corps, which manages the lake and controls its eventual flow into the Mississippi River, is faced with the decision of how to keep commercial shipping moving, given lower-than-normal water levels between St. Louis and Cairo, Ill.
Unlike other sources that feed into the Mississippi, Lake Shelbyville and Carlyle Lake, southwest of Vandalia, were created with the primary purpose of water control for the large river, said Joan Stemler, the corps’ chief of water control for its St. Louis division.
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