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Grant sought to curb Paint Creek erosion



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March 12, 2014 - By Meg Peters

Review Staff Writer

The Lake Orion village is fishing for money from the Aquatic Habitat Grant Program (AHGP).

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is supplying $1 million in 2014 from the Game and Fish protection fund to communities in need of aquatic restoration.

Lake Orion is applying for about $164,000 of those funds to help reshape the eroding banks of the Paint Creek, which flows from Lake Orion to Rochester into the Clinton River.

The application is due March 15, and if awarded, Lake Orion would have to match about $46,000.

Applying to the grant will cost the village about $2,500 for the preliminary design scope of the work.

"You can see as you walk along the banks of (Children's) Park, the banks are eroding in a lot of places, and sedimentation is settling in the creek itself, making it more and more shallow," Village Manager Darwin McClary said.

The village proposes to clean out the sediment, stabilize the shoreline and plant some aquatic plantings along the shore for further support. The proposal would also help establish two public access points so people can walk to the shore without walking everywhere.

Purpose of the AHGP is to improve fish and other aquatic organism populations by preserving intact and rehabilitating degraded aquatic habitat, the MDNR website says.

Federal, tribal, local and state units of government, nonprofit groups and individuals can apply with a grant that focuses on preventing the problem not mending the symptoms.

"I think we have a good chance. We are towards the head waters of the entire Clinton river water shed," McClary said, "so we think it's a good start to comprehensive rehabilitation, we are optimistic."

The project would likely consist of two phases, the first phase restoring the part of the creek that wraps around Children's Park. The second part would hopefully restore the creek wrapping around Meek's Park, McClary said.

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