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Time short on getting repairs for lake

Time is running very short for homeowners on Oswego Lake to schedule for permits and repairs.

No official statistics on permits were available from either the Lake Oswego Corporation or the city of Lake Oswego. However, with the drawdown scheduled to begin on Monday, Oct. 30, it appears that many of the estimated 700 homeowners will not be able to attain permits in time to schedule repairs.

Even if the permits are acquired in time, many contractors who specialize in repairing docks, seawalls and structures are already booked solid.

'I don't know if there is any magic shortcut on this,' said Bill Wiley, president of the LOC board of directors. 'The corporation is in position to meet demands.'

The lake lowering begins on Oct. 30 and will continue until Nov. 12 until it is down approximately 10 feet. According to news releases from the corporation, this situation will be maintained for a period of four weeks.

Refilling of the lake is scheduled to begin on Dec. 6. Based on average historical rainfall, it is expected that Oswego Lake will be fully refilled in late February or early March.

Repairs for lakefront homes were considered crucial this year because this is the first time the lake has been drawn down since 1998. Previously, the lake was drawn down every year, which allowed repair of seawalls and docks.

However, as related in the LOC newsletter 'Drawdown 2006,' the practice was discontinued because every time the lake was lowered it had to be refilled with Tualatin River water, which was extremely high in nutrients (phosphorus) and sediment.

Lowering was stopped until a solution could be found to minimize the impact that the river water was having on Oswego Lake.

The decision to resume the drawdown this year resulted from repairs to the Oswego Lake dam and flume to the Willamette River in 2004. That created the possibility of refilling the lake with rainfall from the watershed instead of Tualatin River water.

Wiley said, 'We're hoping the drawdowns will be more regular so situations like this don't happen.'

For more information or to ask questions, contact the Lake Oswego Corporation at 503-636-1422 or send an email to or visit the Web site at www.lakecorp.com/.for updates and information.