BY JEFFREY TOMICH • firstname.lastname@example.org > 314-340-8320| Posted: Tuesday, June 5, 2012 11:45 am|
Two buildings in the Lake Valley Condos, center, are among the 4,000 structures — homes, decks, gazebos and patios — built on land that belongs to Ameren Missouri's Bagnell Dam project. This photo is from Sept. 21, 2011. Laurie Skrivan | email@example.com
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission today approved Ameren Missouri's request to re-draw the project boundary for the Osage Hydroelectric project at Lake of the Ozarks to exclude more than 1,500 lakefront homes and other structures in jeopardy of condemnation.
Ameren’s proposal would remove more than 28,000 acres of land around the lake from federal jurisdiction, promising to resolve some of the tumult surrounding a shoreline management plan issued by regulators last summer.
St. Louis-based Ameren owns and manages the lake, Bagnell Dam and Osage hydroelectric plant under FERC's oversight. Terms are spelled out in a 40-year license issued in 2007.
The license requires Ameren to submit a plan to manage land within the Bagnell Dam project, a narrow ring of shoreline encircling the lake. Around much of the lake, the project boundary is defined by elevation, varying from 662 feet to 678 feet above sea level.
The shoreline plan approved by FERC last summer required that homes and other structures built within the Bagnell Dam boundary be "removed, " igniting a furor among lakefront property owners who worried they may lose their homes.
Banks and real estate companies warned it would damage an already fragile real estate market. And Missouri's congressional delegation proposed legislation to limit federal oversight of the lake.
After weeks of criticism, FERC clarified its order last fall, saying the original plan was widely misinterpreted. The agency also scolded Ameren for lax management of shoreline development and ordered a new plan.