Property Committee Considers Dam Report

By Amy Jeanroy

Last Thursday, the Calais property committee met to discuss the draft report on Nash’s Lake dam that was presented to them from Maine State Dam Inspector, Tony Fletcher. 

The granite dam, located at the end of Hardscrabble Rd., was built in 1839. The city acquired it as part of a 640 acre parcel in the 1950s. 

Prompted by the 500 year flood in 2013 which had caused “overtopping,” or overflow of the dam, the dam draft outlined the history, safety and stability of the dam today. Suggestions for improving the structure, monitoring, and water levels were outlined, and Fletcher asked for a response from the city. 

Property committee member Billy Howard said one of the problems with the report, is that only 3 people out of the 50 or 60 property owners were questioned by the Dam Inspector. 

Artie Mingo stated that the level of the water is important for property owners to be able to access the lake, and if it is kept too low there will be areas of the lake that would be detrimental, even unsafe to boaters and waterskiing. 

The committee agreed that the draft’s recommendation to frequently check the level of the dam was acceptable and could be monitored as often as recommended. They also agreed that the suggestion to remove the trees, or possibly cut them back was also reasonable.

 When asked about the city receiving the report, Jim Porter, City Manager  stated:


“The city is concerned about the dam, but we also have some concerns about the draft report and we will be talking with the dam inspector about those concerns.”