Restore recreation and wildlife on the Conodoguinet creek.

Restore recreation and wildlife on the Conodoguinet creek.

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Michael Blanchfield started this petition to Cumberland County PA Commissioners and Planning Department Gary Eichelberger, Jean Foschi, Vince DiFilippo, Kirk Stoner

This petition is to request Cumberland County to restore the Conodoguinet creek bed in the area where it was altered during the Orr’s Bridge construction project. The reduction of the creek bed elevation, caused by the removal of the dam in this location has significantly affected the water levels. Records retrieved so far indicate the permitted dam was constructed around the development of Point Ridge Farms and Pine Brook neighborhoods, around 1960. It raised water levels and provided uninterrupted passage of recreational floats (rafts, canoes, etc.) and wildlife (fish, turtles, etc.). Since this petition was issued supporters have shown a dam in this area dating back to the 1920s. So, this area contained a rock dam for the past 100 years. The submerged dam enabled fish migration and maintained a minimum water level from Orr’s Bridge heading upstream, through the dry seasons. Cumberland County’s plan, public notices and press releases indicated the dam would not be impacted by the bridge construction project.  However, the dam was removed without any public notice, and the water levels dropped instantly. Without restoration of the dam and surrounding creek bed, the creek will never be the same.

The water depth levels are now (April 2021) less than half of what they were due to the dam removal in October 2020. Approximately 1.5 to 2 feet of water depth has been lost.  This adversely affects wildlife and recreational use of the Conodoguinet creek. Multiple requests have been made to the Cumberland County Commissioners office. So far, the County has not been willing to replace the dam.  Specifically, we are asking Cumberland County Commissioners to submit a request to the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for a permit to replace the dam. As the prior dam did, the new dam would provide and easy passage for fish and recreational craft at both the east and west banks, and maintain the same upstream and downstream water levels in the creek. Your signature will be used to demonstrate a broad public support for this restoration.

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At 1,000 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!