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Press Release

USDA Invites Public To Scoping Meeting for Dams in Little Schuylkill River Watershed

Join us Thursday March 2, 2023
Publish Date
Riser at Neiferts Creek Dam in Pennsylvania

USDA-NRCS invites the public to attend a scoping meeting for the rehabilitation of five dams in the Little Schuylkill River watershed on March 2, 2023.

The USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS) invites the public to attend a scoping meeting for the rehabilitation of five dams in the Little Schuylkill River watershed. The meeting is in response to a request from Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania (PA) and the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) to develop dam rehabilitation plans for the five dams, which include:                                                                                                                         

  •  PA-422 (Little Schuylkill River) located in Rush Township at latitude 40.8362, longitude -76.0050
  •  PA-422A (Neiferts Creek) located in Rush Township at latitude 40.8358, longitude -76.0087                               
  •  PA-423 (Locust Creek) located in Tuscarora State Park, Rush Township at latitude 40.8055, longitude -76.0080
  •  PA-424 (Hosensock) located in Ryan Township at latitude 40.8140, longitude -76.0550
  •  PA-425 (Koenigs Creek) located in East Brunswick Township at latitude 40.6905, longitude -75.9359.

Yearly inspections performed by Schuylkill County, DCNR, and PA Department of Environmental Protection professional engineers ensure that the dams are safe and well maintained. However, several items have been identified that are out of compliance with current USDA-NRCS and PA state dam safety criteria.

One of the initial steps in developing the rehabilitation plan for a dam is preparation of a Watershed Plan – Environmental Assessment (Plan-EA). The Plan-EA evaluates various alternatives, including rehabilitation and decommissioning among others, and determines the best alternative for the flood detention structures that meet current State Dam Safety and NRCS design standards.

Two Scoping Meetings will be held on Thursday, March 2, 2023 at 2:00 PM and 6:00 PM, at the Tuscarora State Park Office (687 Tuscarora Park Road, Barnesville, PA 18214). The afternoon meeting at 2:00 PM is mostly for agencies, organizations, watershed associations, etc. but is also open to the public. The evening meeting at 6:00 PM is for the general public. The same material will be presented at both meetings.

The purpose of these meetings is to obtain resource information and concerns associated with the rehabilitation of the watershed resources early in the planning process. Topics will include public participation, project objectives, an outline of the planning process and the role of technical entities, participating agencies, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

For those who prefer to participate virtually, a meeting invitation is available.

Details of the virtual meeting, comments, and questions may be directed to Heather Smeltz, PE, at or (717) 237-2214 by February 28 for remote participation details.


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