GR anglers, researcher oppose dredging river

Grand Rapids
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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — There are more groups joining calls to stop a proposed Grand River dredging project.

Grand Rapids Steelheaders discussed the waterway project and why members believe it’s a bad idea at its meeting Monday night.

They say the proposal, which spans from Eastmanville Township to below the Fulton Street bridge, has several risk factors for both residents and animals.

Dr. Dan O’Keefe, an expert from the Michigan State University Extension Office, gave a special presentation on the topic at the Monday night meeting

He showed the crowd examples of dredged waterways, explaining there are several impacts upstream, downstream and all around the river.

The project could also destroy gravel breeding ground for some fish.

Bob Strek, the group’s vice president and treasurer, said there are also a lot of other unknowns that city officials in Grand Rapids should consider.

“If there are hard chemicals in the sediment and they get washed down, they’re going to Lake Michigan. We drink Lake Michigan’s water. Everyone’s affected that way,” Strek said.

The Grand Rapids and Grand Haven Steelheaders chapter have both written letters opposing the project.

Last month, three state lawmakers from Grand Rapids also wrote letters of opposition to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

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