County help sought to test lakes

MARSHALL CO. — According to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM), toxins produced by blue-green algae are not a problem in Marshall County lakes.
However, some citizens feel differently.
One of them, Joe Toth of Bremen, visited the Marshall County commissioners meeting Tuesday to ask commissioners to fund further testing of county lakes.
“I’m here to address some concerns…and to show you that there are problems in our lakes,” said Toth Tuesday.
He said that the problem started in 2011. There was what he referred to as “smelly muck” found in lakes, and also some purple substance that Toth said was never identified.
“IDEM and the DNR said they can’t test the lakes in Marshall County because they are private,” said Toth. “But how can they be private….the DNR controls those lakes.”
He said that a Department of Natural Resources (DNR) employee did come out to take samples, but later the DNR said that the issue should be handled by the Marshall County Board of Health. Toth contacted Jerry Fussell at the health department and he helped to coordinate an August 22 public meeting with Cyndi Wagner of IDEM.
At that time, Wagner said that the levels of toxins in Marshall County lakes was well under the danger level.
“We need to protect every individual that uses the lakes in Marshall County,” said Toth. “We want to make sure everyone is safe.”
Toth requested that the county fund further testing of lake water. Commissioner Kevin Overmyer recommended that Toth address the county board of health on the matter.
“I can’t really see what the commissioners can do,” added Commissioner Jack Roose. “I’ve always been told that the lakes are under the jurisdiction of the DNR.”