State and federal officials force city to lower rock dam

When the city hired a contractor this past year to rebuild the rock dam jutting out from the Humboldt Municipal Water Plant, they thought they were doing a good thing.
Such action was not shared by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the Army Corps of Engineers. They have informed the city that the rocks extend too far and high and several loads of rock will have to be removed.
“We rebuilt the rock dams but the DNR and Army Corps were not pleased when they received photos and documentation of the work done from the city residents.
“The city retains the right to maintain and repair those, but they can only be three feet tall from the riverbed, six feet tall at the top and 14 feet wide at the base. Those are maximum amounts and we are greatly exceeding those.
“We received a notice of violation from the Army Corps of Engineers, so we will need to apply for permits to do work in the river, to get into compliance.
“We will need to hire a contractor and although all of the rock was from the river, we cannot put it back in the river. It will be several loads.
“We will need to stockpile someplace, but it will also have to be high enough to be out of the flood plain, so on the south structure that bodes a problem, because all of city-owned land there is in the flood plain,” Goedken said.
“Some of those rocks would put a hole in a truck bed of a dump truck,” Goedken said with a hint of exasperation.
The rock pile may wind up next to the city brush pile at the street department headquarters.
Mayor Dan Scholl mentioned about a private property owner needing rip rap for bank stabilization, so perhaps the city can find a user of the unwanted rock.

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