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Crooked Lake’s never-ending concerns continue

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BARRY COUNTY, Mich. -- Homeowner Rick Waak said the drain commissioner, engineer and county officials are doing the best they can with the resources they have. He'd like to see the state get involved to get Crooked Lake to a lower level.

About a month ago, the pump draining water from the lake to a nearby wetland was running. Today, it isn't. The wetland appears to have reached capacity. Previously, Barry County Drain Commissioner Jim Dull stated the pump would run until that happened. Homeowners are concerned because the lake is back on the rise.

"When we moved out here in 2004, we had 25 feet of beach," Waak explained.

He said the first couple of days the pump was in use there was a noticeable difference. But with the wetland at capacity and recent rains, homeowners are back at nature’s mercy.

Waak said, "I think it's a large combination of things. I mean, it has been a very wet year this year which is really disgusting that it comes now. Where was it 5, 6 years ago when the farmers were complaining about drought?"

He and other homeowners find themselves continuing to cope and hope the state steps in.

“The state probably needs to organize or establish a much broader drain system for Southwestern Michigan, so that Watson {Drain] isn’t handling it alone into Crooked Lake for this whole area this part of the state," Waak explained.

He added, "That’s really what we’ve got right now.”

Without a permanent solution, it's unclear what's next. Dull has previously told FOX 17 they are hoping someone steps up and volunteers their property as a place to pump some of the extra water.

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