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Army Corps won’t plug Buford Dam, rejects Lake Lanier Association request
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Buford Dam sits at the base of Lake Lanier and is managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Below the dam the Chattahoochee River continues southward. - photo by Scott Rogers

Lake Lanier water will keep coming down past 1,073 feet after the U.S Army Corps of Engineers rejected the Lake Lanier Association’s request to slow the release of water from Buford Dam once it reaches that mark.

With the lake more than 3 feet above its full summer pool of 1,071 feet (1,074.4 feet as of Tuesday night, June 5), the Army Corps has kicked on its high water plan and is draining water from the lake 24 hours a day until the lake reaches its full summer pool.

On Friday, June 1, LLA President Wilton Rooks and Executive Director Joanna Cloud asked the Army Corps to slow the flow of water once the level hit 1,073 feet, citing downstream problems with constant releases and the heavy toll summer takes on the lake level.

The request would mean a deviation from the water control manual, the guiding document for the corps in managing the lake.

On Monday, the Army Corps said no.

“Given the recent precipitation, we do not intend to grant a deviation at this time,” wrote James DeLapp, district commander of the Army Corps in Mobile. “The lake elevation continued to rise over the weekend and has now peaked at elevation 1,074.6 feet. In addition, weather and downstream river conditions are being closely monitored.”

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