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Four Lakes Task Force News Flash

Keeping you updated you on the latest information and current progress toward bringing back our lakes.

FLTF Q2 public meeting

Public Meeting Update

Nearly 900 people attended our virtual public meeting on July 16 to hear presentations about the path forward for all four lakes. You can find the video on our website under the Meetings tab. Also, look for the slides at the same location.

Check out our website for new documents that have been recently uploaded including a detailed engineering report and correspondence between FERC and Boyce Hydro related to noncompliance.

What is Condemnation?

During the public meeting, we announced our intention to implement “condemnation” efforts to acquire the dams. What does it mean?

Condemnation for our purposes is a legal process that gives local, state or federal government agencies the power to take private property for public use, so long as the owner is paid fair compensation. This is also known as eminent domain. On June 9, resolutions passed in Midland and Gladwin counties authorized FLTF to execute and record a Declaration of Taking and declare the taking of property by eminent domain under the applicable statutes of the State of Michigan so we can bring back the lakes.

The best and only use for the property is as lakes! But first, the dams must be repaired and improved. On July 16, the FLTF board approved to begin condemnation proceedings related to the four dams in an effort to acquire them for approximately $800,000 (which includes payments already made to Boyce for purchase and improvements). 

“There is no viable scenario where the existing owner or any other private owner can restore the dams and lakes,” said Dave Kepler, chair of FLTF in explaining why the Task Force needs to acquire the dams using this method. “There are huge liabilities and cleanup costs with no real path available to a private operator for federal and state funding.”

FLTF expects to file the paperwork in Midland and Gladwin county circuit courts this week.

Eminent Domain: The right of a government or its agent to take private property for public use with payment or compensation.

Using the Lake Bottoms

Residents are urged to remain off the lake bottoms and not to use them for personal reasons. In addition, personal items such as tiki bars, swimming pools or furniture are not permitted, and residents may not modify the bottomlands in any way.

Many agencies are working to clean-up debris and erosion on the lakes. Activity and personal items will interfere with their progress. Please help us make progress on the lakes by keeping them free of activity and personal items.

Donate Today
We Need Your Help to Restore the Lakes and Dams

The Four Lakes Task Force is seeking private donations to accelerate our progress as we look for additional sources of funding. Contributions will make it possible to stabilize and rebuild the four lakes and dams.

Four Lakes Task Force

233 Larkin Street, Midland, MI 48640

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