Fountain Lake project seeks funding in state bonding bill - KXLT - Fox 47 Rochester MN News, Weather, Sports #rochmn

Fountain Lake project seeks funding in state bonding bill

ALBERT LEA, Minn. (FOX 47) -- Some Albert Lea residents are asking state lawmakers for an algae-free future for Fountain Lake.

Members of the House Capital Investment Committee met with members of the Shell Rock Watershed District, which is seeking state financial support for the Fountain Lake Restoration Project.

In the past 10 years, the summer average water clarity in Fountain Lake has been only 1.5 feet. That number is well below the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency's standard.

To help improve that, 345 miles of public ditches and filter strips have been created to stop chemicals from reaching the lake, but there is still more that needs to be done.

The city of Albert Lea along with the Shell Rock Watershed District are working together to request $7.5 million in state funding for the dredging of Fountain Lake. By dredging the accumulated sediment, it will improve the overall quality of fountain lake.

House Capital Investment Chairwoman, Rep. Alice Hausman, DFL-St. Paul, is delighted by the effort put forth by the city of Albert Lea.

"It is local communities solving problems, and I'll tell you today I have been so impressed with the people who have spoken to us. They teach us, it is like a mini course. They come up with the solutions locally, and then help us understand how we can be partners," Hausman said.

Improving the water quality of the lake is a key interest of not only the Shell Rock Watershed District but for the Albert Lea community as well.

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