Twin Lakes changes slow no wake procedure in split vote

The reconstructed Lake Elizabeth spillway in a 2013 photo. /Twin Lakes photo

The reconstructed Lake Elizabeth spillway in a 2013 photo. /Twin Lakes photo

The Twin Lakes Village Board, in a rare bout of dissension and a split vote, on Monday approved a change to how slow no wake level is determined for Lakes Mary and Elizabeth.

The board approved a new procedure in which when the electronic lake level measuring device in the channel between the lakes reads 794.7, the level at the spillway south of Lake Elizabeth will be checked. If it is 794.5 or higher, slow no wake will be declared.

The motion was approved by a 3-2 vote with Trustees Kevin Fitzgerald and Aaron Karow voting against and Trustees Tom Connolly and Jeremy Knoll abstaining.

The old ordinance language called for readings to be taken on official gauges at Lance Park and at the Lake Elizabeth boat launch. But due to damage from ice and other factors, both of those gauges have been criticized as inaccurate.

The change in procedure was recommended by the Lake District Steering Council, but had to be approved by the  Village Board before it could become a local ordinance.

The vote was preceded by another round of somewhat heated discussion of the topic.

Lake District Steering Council Chairman Tony Migon said the most accurate place to measure level is at the recently reconstructed spillway.

“The only place we know that it is accurate is at the top of the spillway,” Migon said.

But Trustee Kevin Fitzgerald argued that taking a measurement at the spillway was irrelevant to determining if the lakes were too high for fast boat traffic. The lakes will be four inches higher than the spillway level during a heavy rain event, he added.

After about 30 minutes of discussion, village President Howard Skinner called for a roll call vote. Trustee Tom Connolly asked that the matter be tabled, but Skinner, who holds the power to table, pressed on with a vote.

Connolly said he was confused about what would be the best procedure to follow and said he was abstaining when his name was called. Knoll said he didn’t want to vote yes or no before abstaining.


One Comment

  1. We are in the 21st Century says:

    With todays GPS technology the gauges at the park and the launch should be able to be checked and re-set with minimal effort or cost. Has this been investigated?

    It might not change anything but it screams of lack of care and maintenance of the existing equipment. Might as well just throw them away!

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