It appears a lake harvester is still being considered for Williams Lake.
City Council was presented with a map of the lake at this past Tuesday’s committee of the whole meeting to identify the areas they would like to see cleared of weeds.
“That is in preparation to submit to the province for permitting and they just identified areas like around the boat launches, the beach area on Scout Island, in the bay around where the float planes land, and in front of North and South Lakeside properties,” said director of municipal services Gary Muraca. “So we wanted to make sure when we were establishing where we wanted to go and to submit our permit, we wanted to have all that information on hand.”
Muraca added that they had previously sought permitting from the province and because of the possibility of being intrusive on vegetation and wildlife were asked to resubmit their request outlining their needs versus their wants.
He said Williams Lake is different than other lakes that utilize a lake harvester in that lakes such as Shuswap, Tabor, and Okanagan are trying to get rid of milfoil whereas they are just trying to control native vegetation so they can utilize the lake.
“That’s why the map went to Council and said well let’s tone it down to see what our true intent is and they’ve now done that,” Muraca said. “We’re going to create a drawing from that and talk to the stakeholders being the Field Naturalists, the Nature Trust, area property and then with all of that information we’re going to send it back to the province and see where we go from there.”
If permitting is approved, Council will then consider finalizing the purchase of a lake harvester for $25,000 from the Tabor Lake Society out of Prince George.
“We had a deal in place probably in November and we told them that we are very interested in this because this is somewhere Council has wanted to go for a long time now to basically clean out certain areas for recreation, and they’re patient in allowing us to work through the permitting process because if we can’t get a permit it’s not really going to be what we want and we’re going to have to walk away from it,” Muraca said.