Lake Dunlap

The view from the Stigall's dock displays mud where water once stood on Lake Dunlap on Friday, May 19, 2019. The couple redid their dock this past year.

One of the biggest stories of 2019 has been the loss of Lake Dunlap after one of the spillgates on the ancient dam that held back the water failed.

Since then both the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung and the Seguin Gazette have been working together to cover the story that sits on the edge of New Braunfels but in Guadalupe County.

On Tuesday, the latest story in the ongoing saga was released which detailed how the residents around the lake are looking at creating a water district to eventually take control of the dam, its repairs and its maintenance.

From the outset, this has been one of the options floated by people as a potential solution because the Guadalupe Blanco River Authority, which owns the dam, says it doesn’t have the millions of dollars necessary to make repairs.

And while the lake has largely been used as a recreational facility — primarily for property owners along its edge — GBRA doesn’t make any money from that use.

The hydroelectric profits generated by the dam don’t amount to enough to repair and maintain the aging facility, which means that some other source of funding needs to be tapped in order to make that a reality.

That those funds should primarily come from the people who derive the most benefit from the lake is obvious, and it will be worth watching to see how this process unfolds.

After all, Lake Dunlap wasn’t the first to fail in the GBRA hydroelectric system. That was Lake Wood in Gonzales County.

It might be in Lake McQueeney’s best interest to start looking at similar solutions that it could implement before the residents are looking out at a sea of mud in place of their beautiful lake.

 

Our Voice is the opinion of the editorial board of the Seguin Gazette.

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