Lake Notes… Water Advisor Board Meeting… By Lionel Robbins
If you plan to clear your shoreline of aquatic vegetation, be advised that there are regulations and guidelines that are overseen by Orange County and State Of Florida Environmental Agencies. Generally a permit is required and the cost of the permit is much less than the fine. There is a link on the LHPOA website to get the required forms and instructions for submission.
The normal algae blooms have been taking place but are not as noticeable because of the lack of nutrients in the water. There are numerous reasons for the lower nutrient level; the biggest is prevention from entering the lake. The Curb Inlet Baskets are a key factor because they catch the leaves, twigs and lawn clippings that normally would wash down the street and directly into the lake. The street sweeping program is yet another huge preventive measure.
Maybe you haven’t noticed but the Hydrilla is totally under control in Lake Holden. It is hard to even find a small patch anywhere but when one is found it is treated the next scheduled application of herbicide. The navigational corridor in the center of the lake is also relatively clear of Illinois Pond Weed. Hopefully soon the water level will be a bit lower so water skiers and wakeboarders will continue to use that “lane” for their recreational enjoyment.
It’s not news that the lake level is extremely high. We all can see that out our window and hopefully you can see your dock. According to Mike Powell (20+ year WAB member) the “drain wells are open and working to design. In 90+ degree weather and the wells working we can expect the lake to drain about one inch daily, if there is NO rain! The docks and other structures are needing about 8-10 days as the wakes on the larger boats are up to 18 inches.”
DID YOU KNOW?
Lake Holden is not a public lake.
Lake Holden is not a private lake.
Lake Holden is a non-public lake.
To be a public lake, there must be public access, i.e. a boat ramp suitable for launching watercraft from a trailer, pulled by a vehicle. [there are other parameters, but they are not noteworthy for this article]
To be a private lake, the property surrounding the water body must be owned by one or two owners.
Our non-public lake gets no funding from the County or the State. Any project that benefits water quality in Lake Holden has been paid for by you, the tax paying resident or business in the Lake Holden stormwater drainage basin. A portion of the Ad Valoreum tax collected by the County for Lake Holden projects is Municipal Service Taxing Unit (MSTU). Projects paid for by the MSTU include street sweeping, curb inlet baskets (CIB), aquatic weed control, retention ponds, alum treatments, stocking of fish, numerous studies to evaluate the best management practices for the lake, only naming a few.
If you have you have moved onto Lake Holden in the past 10-15 years you are not aware of how poor the water quality of the lake was. There was the time that you could stand in ankle deep water and not see your toes. There was no aquatic vegetation, fishing was not attractive, and swimming was not desirable. In 1994 out of 136 lakes listed, Lake Holden water quality was 134 just above Lake Apopka at 136.
Since the early 1970’s, there has been numerous projects supervised by volunteers who spent countless hours of their spare time only to see some projects fail. Fortunately, they did not give up. There were times of struggle when there was push back from governing agencies, lack of funds, indifferent residents or worse, residents that would not cooperate what-so-ever.
Whichever way you enjoy Lake Holden, sailing, swimming, skiing, booze cruise, fishing, landing planes, watching sunsets, hanging out at the “sandbar”, you are doing so because of the efforts of many people who have volunteered their time to improve the water quality of Lake Holden. Those many volunteers are/were board members of the Lake Holden Property Owners Association (LHPOA) and/or Lake Holden Water Advisory Board (WAB). Others volunteer their homes for LHPOA annual events, taking water samples, while there are those who appear at Orlando City, Orange County, Environmental, Planning and Development, (the list goes on…) meetings to represent Lake Holden. It is very important to them to continue the improvement of the water quality of the lake. They know that it is a privilege to put their vessel on the lake and use it for whatever recreational activity the vessel is designed. If they do, they must accept the responsibility of preserving other people’s property and to not cause bodily harm while operating that vessel.