Welcome to my February update and thank you for your interest in the LPA!

I am pleased to announce we are slowly and steadily building readership of my General Manager’s blog.  Please help me by encouraging your fellow members to view the site and join us as a subscriber.

Attached you will find my monthly update to the LPA Board of Directors.  Please feel free to give me a call or email if you would like additional information on any of these topics.

John Rutledge

GM – LPA


February Update

Administration

  • Payments for 2010 dues and assessments are starting to arrive.  This is always a welcome event as it improves cash position for the Association.

  • We have received a variance for a one time burn regarding the January ice storm.  The original deadline of March 8th has been extended to May 1st due to unfavorable clean-up conditions.  The LPA intends to accept brush through April 25th with the burn being completed between April 25th and May 1st.
  • The long term status of our brush dumps is still being reviewed.  We have had some very favorable conversations with DNR and believe this is going in a good direction.  I will know more in a couple of weeks.

  • The 2010 budget is off to a respectable start.  Salt and sand expenses are expectedly higher than desired.  We have estimated salt and sand usage for the 2009-2010 winter will be roughly 250% of average.  An average winter would require approximately $12k in materials with this winter consuming approximately $28k.

  • LPA hired a local contractor to remove the roof metal from the east and middle set of slips.  We are prepared for the possibility of a late start on the slip replacement project due to late ice-out.  An extended winter will not only be a nuisance but could also result in delays to our spring projects. 

  • We have submitted a DNR application which will allow us to sell Iowa fishing and hunting licenses at the LPA office.  We believe this will be a convenience to our members and is projected to be a profit neutral venture. 

  • The Guthrie County Budget Hearing will be on March 9th at 10:00 am.  I will be in attendance to ensure Lake Panorama is represented.

Maintenance

  • LPA sent requests for proposal (rfp) to 8 Iowa contractors for 2010 seal coat bids.  The rfp includes options for full width application and half-width application.  Depending on price, we will seal coat between 9 and 10 miles this year.

  • Snow removal continues to keep our maintenance department occupied.  I have included some comments on salt and sand usage in the Administrative section of this report.

Security

  • We met with IA DNR officials last week regarding goose and deer management.  This was a very productive meeting with several suggestions being made by the DNR.
    • Prohibit feeding of deer by members.
    • Prohibit nesting structures for geese.
    • Promote LEGAL harassment of geese as they search for suitable nesting sites.
    • Establish goose sanctuary which would be more attractive to geese than our beaches.
    • Continue controlled hunting to manage herd population.

  • We understand the DNR recommendations will be met with mixed feelings by the membership and are researching the pros and cons for future board consideration.
  • I have invited the DNR to band geese on LPA property in late June or early July of this year.  The geese will NOT be relocated as part of this program but the data gathered over time will provide us important insight into population management.  Primarily, this will help determine what percentage of the annual goose harvest is “resident” geese and what percentage is migratory geese.  

LP West Golf Course

  • LPA will be including LP West Golf Course in some annual advertising we sponsor.  This will be found in local, community booklets such as those distributed by Guthrie County Tourism and PRIDE.

Water

  • We are currently in the process of reviewing the engineering report submitted by Tom Madden.  This report is a comprehensive review of the LPA production facility and will be presented to the Board as part of the March Board meeting.  We are currently on pace to have this submitted to IA DNR by April 1st for their review.

Erosion Control

  • The RIZ Board will meet on March 5th to approve its FY 2010-2011 budget.  In addition, they will be reviewing their bonds to see if refinancing is in their best interest.  Our relationship with RIZ continues to be very positive.
  • LPA is in the process of temporarily draining the county basin to repair leaking stop blocks in the outlet structure.

Dam

  • Each spring, we receive many questions and suggestions about our management of the lake level.  Many of the suggestions we receive are not practical as they oversimplify the unique physics of Lake Panorama.  Please be assured our Dam staff is experienced, knowledgeable and prepared.

Did You Know? Believe it or not, spring is on its way.  Sunshine is once again a regular occurrence with each new day being a little longer than the last.  I noticed the other day some of the finches at our feeder looked a little more colorful than they had before.  Look hard and you too will see signs of winter’s impending end.

Quote to ponder – That which is not good for the bee-hive cannot be good for the bees. – Marcus Aurelius

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