Army Corps Seeks Feedback on Brandon Road Lock Changes

The Army Corps of Engineers is hold brandon-mappublic meetings to gather input on options for enhanced control of invasive species in the Brandon Road Lock & Dam area near Joliet.

After extensive research, the ACE published the Great Lakes and Mississippi River Interbasin Study (GLMRIS) in January, 2014. GLMRIS lays out several possible plans for preventing “aquatic nuisance species” such as Asian carp from migrating from the river system to the Great Lakes. The study describes eight possible action plans — everything from doing pretty much what we are doing now (electric barriers and chemical treatments) to a complete separation of the river system from the Great Lakes.

One of the options studied entails modifying the Brandon Road Lock on the Des Plaines river so that water is never transferred from the downriver to the upriver side of the lock. This is accomplished using “directional flushing” of the lock chamber.

The public is invited to attend one of two meetings, or to submit comments on line. The meetings are Saturday, December 6, 2014, 1:00 PM — 4:00 PM, Argonne National Laboratory in Lemont, and Tuesday, December 9, 2014, 3:00 PM — 6:00 PM local time, Gleacher Center, 450 North Cityfront Plaza Drive, Chicago.

There are multiple opportunities for public comment. For more details, see

News coverage video from WTTW’s Chicago Tonight.

Did you know:

  • The Brandon Road lock lifts vessels about 34 feet, and takes about 19 minutes to fill.
  • The Great Lakes contain over 6 QUADRILLION gallons of fresh water. That’s 6,000,000,000,000,000 gallons.

Winter Games Reservations Now Open & Event Schedule

Hotel phone: 309-685-2556
Reservation details were previously posted.

Friday (2/20/15)
Hospitality Rooms Open.
DJ Todd (Daytime until Midnight)
Hotel Restaurant Open

Saturday (2/21/15)
Complimentary Breakfast Buffet
Hospitality Rooms Open.
Hotel Restaurant Open
IRBBA Board Meeting 10:30 am
IRBBA Commodores Meeting 11:00 am
Winter Games begin 2:00 pm
DJ (Daytime until Close)

Sunday (2/22/15)
Complimentary Breakfast Buffet
Ugh, Ouch! Whew.. – made it another year!

New Illinois Boating Laws for 2015

Three new Illinois boating regulations were signed into law on July 5, 2014, and will go into effect on January 1, 2015.

  • Senate Bill 3434 allows for the seizure of a watercraft used in the commission of certain offenses related to operating under the influence. The new rules bring penalties for boating under the influence more in line with those for operating a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs or alcohol.
  • Senate Bill 3433 requires all persons born after January 1, 1998, to take and pass a boating safety course validated by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and hold a valid boating safety certificate before they can operate a motorboat with an engine over 10 horsepower.
  • Senate Bill 2731 mandates that the operator of any watercraft that is towing a person, such as a water skier or tuber, must display a bright orange flag measuring not less than 12 inches per side. The flag must be displayed to indicate a downed water skier, a water skier in the water preparing to ski, a water skiing line extended from the motorboat, or a ski in the water in the vicinity of the motorboat. This applies to anyone engaged in any activity where a person is towed behind or alongside a motorboat, including, but not limited to, barefoot skiing, tubing, skiing on other contrivances, wake boarding, and parasailing.