Kahle Lake renovations subject of virtual public meeting

Kahle Lake renovations subject of virtual public meeting

SALEM TWP. - Kahle Lake enthusiasts can tune into a virtual meeting April 8 to learn more about an upcoming major renovation effort at the Salem Township lake.

State Rep. Donna Oberlander (R-63) announced the session, which is free and open to the public.

"We were planning this meeting for last spring so local residents, anglers and boaters who use the lake could ask questions about the upcoming repairs and make whatever plans they need to, but the pandemic put that in-person gathering on hold," Oberlander said in a news release. "Working with the 'Friends of Kahle Lake' and organizer Jack Bish Jr., we decided to hold the meeting virtually so that residents and lake visitors can view the meeting at any time convenient to them."

The meeting will include a presentation by Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Executive Director Timothy Schaeffer and will begin at 3 p.m.

The meeting will be broadcast at http://www.RepOberlander.com and www.Facebook.com/RepOberlander.

There is no need to register in advance for the virtual meeting.

"We announced last year the lake will soon benefit from the release of state funds," said Oberlander. "Specifically, the funding estimated at $8 million will include planning and engineering, and will allow repairs to be done in a more timely manner so the lake can reopen sooner. The overall construction is expected to last until November 2024."

Bish has been collecting comments, questions and suggestions concerning the project and has presented those matters to the fish and boat commission for discussion during the virtual meeting.

In addition to Oberlander and the fish and boat commission's participation, the session will include state Rep. Lee James (R-64) and state Sen. Scott Hutchinson (R-21).

Bish thanked all of the people involved for getting the session organized and set up.

The rebuilding of the dam and spillway structures at Kahle Lake in Salem Township will take approximately four years and will cost about $7.5 million.

Paul Urbanik, the PFBC's chief of engineering, said in 2016 seepage from the lake dam is causing the deterioration of the main and secondary spillways.

That deterioration in turn is affecting the stability of the main dam structure.

The entire concrete spillway structure is deficient and needs to be replaced; spillway capacity and seepage will also need to be addressed.

Part of the plan will involve removing as many fish as possible from the water before completely draining the 47-year-old lake.

Kahle Lake is a 251-acre, PFBC-owned impoundment located on the border of Clarion and Venango counties near Lamartine. It is managed to allow fishing opportunities for largemouth bass, bluegill, yellow perch, black crappies, walleye and brown bullhead.