Pier Cove Beach in Fennville

DEQ grants give Allegan County beach testing new life

Ryan Lewis, Editor

New grant money will help the county health department continue testing water quality at Lake Michigan beaches.

Commissioners voted 4-2 Thursday, May 22, to accept a $1,669 grant from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to conduct regular testing.
Randy Rapp, with Allegan County Health Department, estimated that testing six county beaches starting June 23 for 10 weeks could cost the county approximately $1,500 in staff time and mileage to drive water samples to Kent County. The grant would pay for the lab testing.
The health department posts no-swim advisories when concentrations of E. coli bacteria exceed acceptable limits, as happens sporadically. Last year, a no-swim advisory was put out twice for Pier Cove County Park beach for a total of four days; West Side County Park beach had one two-day advisory.
In each instance, however, the delay for test results outlived the usefulness of the advisories.

For full story, pick up a copy of the May 29 issue of The Allegan County News or subscribe to the e-edition.

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