Township seeks DEP loan for dam


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  • PHOTO BY ANN GENADER The Bubbling Springs lower pond dam spillway needs repairing.



BY ANN GENADER

The Township of West Milford Council has passed a resolution authorizing the submission of a loan application for the Bubbling Springs Lower Pond Dam under the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Dam Restoration Loan Program.

The council acted quickly to submit the application after hearing that there was going to be a new round of funding requests heard. An application for funds for the state mandated repairs was unsuccessful during the last round of loan application requests in 2014.

The work is needed on the lower lake dam at the Bubbling Springs Municipal Park – not the lake used for swimming.

The resolution said that based on the 2008 Hazard Clarification Study and 2009 Regular Inspection Report the dam does not meet the Spillway Design Storm requirements of the NJDEP Dam Safety and Flood Control.

The township resolution said the Dam Restoration Loan Program is the most cost effective method to provide the necessary funding to rehabilitate the dam.

The initial concerns from the state about safety of the dam resulted from a 2008 study and subsequent information from the New Jersey Dam Safety Division. The report said the dam cannot pass the outflow requirement associated with the spillway design without overtopping.

The state directed the township to proceed with the final design of modifications so the outflow produced by the spillway will meet requirements.

Then in 2009, a regular inspection identified that additional spillway concrete repairs were needed – along with work on a dysfunctional low level outlet.

In 2012, Gueria and Vreeland Engineering of Flanders was granted a contract to provide a scope of services for rehabilitation of the dam. The cost was not to exceed $46,950.

In 2014, Supervising Engineering Aide Eric Miller said the Dam Safety Division indicated that work needed from Super Storm Sandy destruction was occupying most of their staff’s time and there was a backlog of reviews pending.

In 2013, the local engineering department representatives reported to the council that there was a portion of the dam encroaching onto adjacent property. The report said the proposed improvements would most likely increase the size of the dam – resulting in additional encroachment. An easement would be sought by the township.

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