Last week a concerned citizen wrote a letter to the Editor of the Maple Leaf objecting to the use of taxpayer dollars for any work undertaken on Silver Lake or Misner Dam. The concern was that taxpayers should not be paying to beautify the views of private landowners. The PDWPA has responded to this letter with clarification of facts that may not be fully understood by people new to the area. It should be noted that the land bordering the lake is indeed held privately. In the case of the south side, Silver Lake Park is wholly owned and maintained by the Lions Club. The Lions Club pay annual taxes on the land which they mow, plant and make available to the public for recreational activities. It is also made available to service groups for community events and fundraising activities. These service clubs use their revenues to reinvest in community projects.
The following letter to be published in this week’s Maple Leaf is a formal response from The Port Dover Waterfront Preservation Association and its Friends of Silver Lake Committee.
LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Revitalizing a community re. Dredging Silver Lake
The question of dredging Silver Lake is not about beautifying a few backyards, it’s about the revitalization of a community. Not long ago, an internationally renowned author and keynote speaker visited Norfolk County for a seminar. While staying in Port Dover, he pointed out the key advantage we have in this community. He said having a water feature, of any kind, was an essential factor in the success of community restoration. And here in Port Dover, we have miles of waterfront!
Our community is blessed with beautiful waterfront and Silver Lake continues to hold a special place in the hearts of many in and around Norfolk County. The Friends of Silver Lake will be working hard, with Norfolk County, to find funding from both private and public sources.
The restoration of Silver Lake will take planning and money and yes, lots of patience. The Friends of Silver Lake are committed to this project. We have volunteers, we have a plan, and we have a community willing to step up. Plans include not only simply the dredging of the lake, but the introduction of a managed wetlands providing for long-term siltation control, flood control, water purification and the preservation of sensitive native aquatic species. A plan to establish power generation from river flow is also being investigated, along with generation at the dam, when it becomes available. Annual income from such a venture could fund ongoing Lake maintenance. Our long term plans also include public access via wetland boardwalks, lakefront promenades and walkways along the Lions Club Silver Lake Park, all adjacent to the Lynn Valley trail system.
Our community as a whole will benefit from the restoration of Silver Lake and thanks to our many supporters, we will once again, have a real Silver Lake!
The Friends of Silver Lake committee
Port Dover Waterfront Preservation Assoc.