The Buena Vista County Board of Supervisors decided on a vote of 4-1 to provide $600,000 for the purchase of a dredge for an expanded lake restoration project on Storm Lake.
The decision came Tuesday afternoon following a request by the Lake Preservation Association for the county to chip in to buy a dredge.
Supervisor Jim Gustafson made the motion. Supervisors Lorna Burnside, Herb Crampton, Dick Vail and Gustafson voted in favor.
Supervisor Doug Bruns voted against the motion, voicing concerns that farmers and farm owners would pay between 60 and 70 percent of the cost of the project.
Bruns said he is supportive of the lake dredging project, but would rather see funds come from private donors or on a per capita or per household basis.
"I don't know how I could force people to pay for it when they're struggling to survive," he said of farmers.
The board has not made final decisions on how the money will be appropriated. The board could borrow up to $400,000 through the public hearing process. No public vote would be required.
The $600,000 commitment from the county provides the LPA the tools necessary to go after state and federal funding for the project, LPA members said at the meeting.
Also, with county funding, the City of Storm Lake will provide $225,000 in local option sales tax dollars to purchase ancillary equipment needed for a dredge, such as piping and Jon boats.
The additional money would also bring the City of Storm Lake's commitment to the project to $600,000, following the purchase of a dredge spoil site on the east side of Storm Lake for $375,000 earlier this year.
Also, the City of Lakeside has provided an initial pledge of $30,000 in local option sales tax dollars to the project. In following years, the city will provide 25 percent or about $9,000 of its sales tax receipts to the project.
Look for more details in Thursday's Pilot-Tribune.