Lower Elkhorn NRD Continues Partnership with Game & Parks

Lower Elkhorn NRD Continues Partnership with Game & Parks


NORFOLK, Nebraska – At their July meeting, the Lower Elkhorn Natural Resources District (LENRD) Board of Directors voted to approve an amendment to the Interlocal Agreement with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission (NGPC) for the operation and maintenance of the Willow Creek State Recreation Area (SRA), southwest of Pierce. The amendment will provide for an annual payment of $10,000 to the NGPC to fund employees of the Commission to complete tasks previously performed by employees of the district.

The district’s partnership with the NGPC has been ongoing since the SRA opened to the public in 1984. The LENRD owns the property and is in a lease agreement with the NGPC for the management of the area. The flood control structure protects the City of Pierce and downstream landowners to just north of Norfolk. The SRA covers 1,633 acres, including a 700-acre reservoir, offering camping, fishing, boating, and more.

The LENRD board is also gathering more information and potential ways to reduce the toxic algae and improve water quality in the lake at the SRA.  In May, the board signed a contract with FYRA Engineering to study the internal phosphorus loading within the Willow Creek reservoir. 

“This is an introduction to a project that can help us to further understand the complexity of this issue and assist us in developing a plan to protect the water quality in the lake and the surrounding area,” said LENRD General Manager Mike Sousek.

The first step in the process involves the collection and analysis of core soil samples.

In other action, the board voted to help with the expenses of the 2020 Scrap Tire Collection at the Dodge County Fairgrounds in Scribner. The funds will be used for any expenses that are not covered by the Waste Reduction & Recycling Incentive Grant. The amount will be split 50-50 with the Papio-Missouri River NRD, not to exceed $10,000 of LENRD funds. The collection will be held in late August.

The LENRD board & staff meet each month to develop and implement management plans to protect our natural resources for the future. The next LENRD board meeting will be Thursday, August 27, at 7:30 p.m. Watch for further updates and stay connected with the LENRD by subscribing to their monthly emails.