Roy and Karen Walker’s condominium at Lake of the Ozarks represented a retirement dream fulfilled when the couple bought it nearly a decade ago.
The unit overlooking the relatively calm Niangua arm of the lake had everything they wanted. It was near town, right on the shoreline, with an easily accessible boat dock.
But proximity to the water has gone from a selling point to liability, their property from asset to albatross. The Columbia, Ill., couple are among thousands of property owners along the lake now stuck in legal limbo after being notified that all or part of their homes, decks, gazebos and patios were built on land that belongs to Ameren Missouri’s Bagnell Dam and Osage hydroelectric project.
What’s more, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission — the agency that regulates the lake, the dam and the hydroelectric plant— issued an order stating that all of the so-called nonconforming structures must be removed.