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Congressman Tim Ryan

Representing the 13th District of Ohio

Representatives Tim Ryan (D-OH) and Bill Johnson (R-OH) Push for Funding to Update Water Control Plans for Mahoning Valley Reservoirs

October 10, 2018
Press Release

Youngstown, OH – Representatives Tim Ryan (D-OH) and Bill Johnson (R-OH) urged the United States Army Corps of Engineers to provide funding to update the water control plans for the three reservoirs feeding the Mahoning River: Berlin Reservoir, Michael J Kirwan Reservoir, and Mosquito Creek Lake. The water control manual containing the water control plan was originally developed in the late 1970s. The letter, which was signed by both members, laid out how--over the past several decades--conditions have changed in the watershed such that an update of these water control manuals could positively impact local businesses and recreational users who rely on the reservoirs.

“Updating the water control plans for the network of reservoirs that feed into the Mahoning River is critical to our community’s economic well-being. Outdated control plans have led to premature lowering of water levels – specifically at Berlin Reservoir – that hinder economic opportunities for residents in the area. Providing funding to update these protocols is a sensible thing to do to balance the needs of residents, as well as the safety of the whole region,” said Rep. Ryan.

“Updating the water control plans for these three reservoirs is long overdue, and I am hopeful this letter will encourage the Army Corps of Engineers to take swift action. We must balance the economic needs and opportunities of the Berlin Lake community, while appropriately addressing related safety and water control concerns. I’ll continue working to find real solutions to address this issue,” said Rep. Johnson.

Text of the letter can be found below, and a scan of the original letter can be found here:

October 4, 2018

Ryan Fisher
Principal Deputy for the Assistant Secretary
Directorate of Civil Works
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
441 G Street NW
Washington, DC 20314-1000

Dear Deputy Fisher:

We write to urge the United States Army Corps of Engineers to provide funding to update the water control manuals for the three reservoirs feeding the Mahoning River: Berlin Reservoir, Michael J Kirwan Reservoir, and Mosquito Creek Lake.  The water control manual containing the water control plan was originally developed in the late 1970s.  Over the past several decades, conditions have changed in the watershed such that an update of these water control manuals could positively impact the socio-economics of the region.

It is also the case that the drawdown to winter pool elevation at Berlin Reservoir begins in July, which negatively impacts recreational use of the lake and, and as a result creates a lack of opportunities for socio-economic benefits.  It is our understanding this drawdown occurs to meet flow requirements for the river and not for flood risk management.

We therefore request your support for Fiscal Year 2019 workplan funding for these important water control plan updates.  

Sincerely,

Tim Ryan
Member of Congress

Bill Johnson
Member of Congres

 

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