Harrisburg, PA – The
Independence Day holiday will provide a great opportunity for anglers fishing Lehigh County’s Leaser
Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) has temporarily suspended all seasons, sizes and creel limits
at the popular lake, effective July 1.
“We’re taking this action in preparation for a fish salvage to be
conducted this fall in conjunction with the complete draining of the lake,” said Dr. Douglas Austen, PFBC Executive
opportunities for anglers to harvest fish prior to salvage efforts provides both additional recreational
opportunities and can help reduce the number of fish that will either be captured and transported or potentially
stranded when the water level drops.”
The Commission has not established a date for the fish salvage efforts
but it will occur sometime in the fall. The drawdown of the lake will occur slowly over the course of
the year. The lake bed will be allowed to thoroughly dry throughout the winter and following year to allow
heavy equipment to have safe access to the dried lake bed. Construction is tentatively scheduled to
begin in December 2009 and will take about one year to complete. Specific projects include major upgrades to the spillway
and work to stop seepage through the dam’s
earthen walls. The cost of the project is estimated at $5.7 million.
Leaser Lake was built by the Pennsylvania
Fish and Boat Commission in 1971 to provide access to water-oriented recreation. The lake and adjacent
state and county land cover approximately 536 acres, with public areas leased and operated by Lehigh
County. The lake features two separate boat ramps and free parking.
In September 2006, $4.8 million in grants were made available to help Lehigh County upgrade Leaser Lake. The funds were made available through
a number of sources, including $750,000 from the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Community Conservation
Partnerships Program, $2.25 million from the Growing Greener II initiative – including $1.75 million in funds
earmarked for use by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission – and $1.8 million through the state’s capital
budget. The state grants will be used in conjunction with $500,000 from Lehigh County to make repairs to Leaser Lake
dam and improvements to the surrounding areas.
The temporary suspension of regulations will stay in place until the PFBC completes
the fish salvage. Click here for more information about Leaser Lake.
mission of the Fish and Boat Commission is to protect, conserve, and enhance the Commonwealth’s aquatic resources
and provide fishing and boating opportunities. For more information about fishing and boating in Pennsylvania,
please visit our website at www.fishandboat.com.