It’s unfortunate state funding for dredging at Gardner Lake has been denied.
In January, the Gardner City Council approved debt financing of $300,000 to dredge Gardner Lake. Matching funding of $280,000 was to have been received from KDA (Division of Conservation, Kansas Department of Agriculture).
However, at some point since January, the DOC has denied the grant application, indicating the lake is not the city’s water source. Currently, Gardner’s primary water source is Hillsdale Lake, and Gardner Lake serves as a secondary source.
Although dredging will most likely not be done in 2017 – unless another funding source is found – repair work on the spill way is still scheduled for 2018 in the city’s Capital Improvements Program.
In 2013, an inspection of the spillway concluded it was hazardous, and an inspection in 2015 identified failures along the length of the spillway. It concluded the spillway needs to be replaced to ensure the integrity of the dam.
Gardner Lake was built in 1937. The city owns the actual lake, but the majority of the residences around the lake are in unincorporated area.
Although Gardner Lake is no longer the city’s primary water source, it is an asset to the community – both city and county.
It’s hoped city and lake residents can work together to identify an alternate funding source.