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Regulators OK new boundaries at Lake of the Ozarks

An aerial view of Lake of the Ozarks.
(via Flickr/John Picken)
An aerial view of Lake of the Ozarks.

CORRECTION: We incorrectly referred to Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler's press secretary as "Steve Schwartz" in an earlier version of this post. His name is Steve Walsh. We apologize for the error.

Updated at 3:12 p.m. and 4:45 p.m. with more details.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission today approved Ameren Missouri's plan to reduce the amount of land the company owns and manages along the shoreline of the Lake of the Ozarks.

Area residents were alarmed last year when FERC ordered the removal of any homes or businesses within the lakefront boundary of Ameren's Bagnell Dam and hydroelectric project.

The new boundary excludes all residential and commercial buildings from Ameren's landholdings around the lake.

The director of FERC's Office of Energy Projects, Jeff Wright, says within a year, Ameren will have to propose a plan for other kinds of lakeside structures.

"The gazebos, the piers, etc. that are within the project boundary, and come up with some sort of proposed resolution for dealing with those structures,” Wright said.

Republican Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler's district includes part of the lake. Her press secretary Steve Walsh calls the plan a victory for common sense and property rights.

"While it's not a perfect solution to the problem, to the situation that exists, it is something that should ease a lot of concerns, make a lot of people feel a little more secure in their homes," Walsh said.

Ameren says the newly established shoreline boundaries will protect about 1,500 homes and other buildings.