MONTEVIDEO -- The Montevideo City Council has declined an offer from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to stock a storm water retention pond as a fishing pond for youth in the community.
Council members were following the recommendation of the city's park board at their meeting Monday. The park board had cited concerns about safety, the costs of developing handicapped accessible access, and possible contamination of fish as among the reasons not to pursue the offer.
The DNR fisheries office in Ortonville had raised the possibility of stocking panfish in a storm water drainage pond behind Tanglewood Park and Horizons Trails. It has a depth of more than 8 feet and holds panfish and bullheads.
If it were to become a fishing pond, the city would be required to develop a dock and a handicapped access with no more than a 5 percent grade to it. It would cost an estimated $23,000 to meet the requirements, said City Manager Steve Jones.
The pond also has a steep slope, which raised concerns about safety.
There were also concerns about the possibility of youth swimming in the pond with increased usage and access to the site.
The pond waters fill with algae in the summer and cattails line some of its shoreline.
Jones said there were also concerns expressed about consuming fish caught in the pond. The pond holds storm water washed from roadways and yards and could hold contaminants.