History, Elkhart River Restoration Association, Inc.

History

The Elkhart River Restoration Association, Inc. was founded June 16, 1983 to study the needs of the Elkhart River and its watershed. As a not-for-profit corporation the association works with the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM), Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), the Army Corp. of Engineers, the Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD), and local officials to improve the river.The original officers were Harold Weaver, President and Director, Frank Yoder, Secretary and Director. Other Directors were James Siegmann, Frank Kummeth, J. Lawrence Burkholder, Larry Beachy, Max Chiddister, Max Kercher, and Daniel Sherman.

Chronology

1982

Held local home meetings around Pond area to:
a) Clean up Goshen Pone to improve water quality
b) Clean Elkhart River around Goshen area
c) Reduce flooding in Goshen
d) Repair old Dam

1983

Incorporated June 16 as non-profit corporation in the state of Indiana.
Elected Board of Directors and Officers.
Set Goals.
Held meetings with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR).

1984

Hired Ten_Eck Engineering for study of the Elkhart River.
Held meetings with county officials of LaGrange, Noble, Kosciusko and Elkhart.

1985

IDNR shows interest in helping of river clearing and snagging.
IDNR officials float river and promise a report.

1986

IDNR floats the river for survey and report.
Right of Entry forms need to be signed by property owners along river before work can begin.
Goshen Dam springs leak and is not repairable.

1987

Emergency declared at leaking dam.
No funds are available from State or Federal Agencies.
New dam extension is built with draw-down tubes with local funds:

Elkhart County Park Deptartment

$325,000

 

City of Goshen

55 ,000

ERRA - Engineering

25,000

ERRA - Donations

40,000

IDNR Grant in 1990

50,000

Total Cost

$495,000

Contract let for clearing of north and south branches of Elkhart River.
Hired Lawson-Fisher for water quality study of Goshen Pond.

1988

Completed clean up of north and south branches of Elkhart River.
Goshen Pond drained to inspect old dam and banks.

1989

Hired Lawson-Fisher to engineer new Dam and Pond area.
Applied for new funding to continue river cleaning.

1990

Funds requested from Indiana Lottery Agency for $2,250,000 to build new dam and dredge the pond.
River cleaning complete to Benton Dam.

1991

Work started on new dam in fall.
River cleaning complete to Waterford bridge.
Permits and consents obtained from all property owners through the City of Goshen.

1992

New dam completed in December.
Held meetings with IDNR and other agencies for additional funding to complete cleaning of the river.

1993-1995

We are still awaiting finding release from IDNR to clean the river through the City of Goshen. We have been told this will happen in 1996.

1996

Agreement signed by Elkhart County Commissioners to IDNR to budget $15,000 annually for clearing and cleaning of the Elkhart River by the Elkhart County Park Department.

1997

Requested assistance from IDNR to repair river banks to control water flow into old gravel pit at Miller's Manor Addition along OxBow Drive.
Again requested funding from Budget Committee of Legislators to complete river cleaning from Goshen to the St. Joe River in Elkhart.
River cleaning completed through the City of Goshen.

2003

Cleanup from the Goshen Dam to the St. Joe River not completed but funds are available. ERRA again pursuing to have this work completed.  Senator Riegsecker makes contacts and provides valuable assistance in restarting the process.

2004

April 27 and 28 - The IDNR floats the river from the Goshen Dam to the St. Joe River, marking 27 locations for clean-up work.
July 28 - Pre-Bid meeting held for clean-up work.
August 6 - Contract for clean-up work awarded.

2005

ERRA applies for an EPA 319 grant to develop a watershed management plan.

2006

November 22 the 319 grant contract is signed by the Indiana Department of Environment Management and ERRA.

2007

February 20 ERRA signs contract with V3 to be the watershed coordinator

2008

WMP approved February 22, 2008
First Rain Barrel auction held during Goshen's First Friday

2009

ERRA assists the Indiana Silver Jackets to develop a report on the Waldron Lake flooding
Contracted with the City of Elkhart to perform a Biological Assessments on Select Sites of the Elkhart River and Two Tributaries in and Around Goshen, Indiana to determine Water Quality and Aquatic Life Health. Assessments to be performed in 2009 and 2010.
Held second Rain Barrel auction during First Friday

2010

City of Elkhart to performs second Biological Assessments on Select Sites of the Elkhart River and Two Tributaries in and Around Goshen, Indiana to determine Water Quality and Aquatic Life Health.
Held third Rain Barrel auction during First Friday

2011

ERRA Receives Award Notification of $397,000 Great Lakes Commission (GLC) Grant.
ERRA holds Kick-off meeting for the GLC Grant
Held fourth Rain Barrel auction during First Friday

2012

ERRA Stocked the Elkhart River with approx. 2,800 Walleye. 1/2 above the Goshen dam and 1/2 below the dam.
Held fifth Rain Barrel auction during First Friday

2013

ERRA

2014

ERRA

2015

ERRA

2016

ERRA.

2017

ERRA

2018

ERRA

2019

ERRA

2020

ERRA.

2021

ERRA

2022

ERRA