OROVILLE (CBS13) — The now infamous Oroville Dam spillway, with its crumbling concrete, could create a business boom in this small city, if Oroville Mayor Linda Dahlmeier has her way.

“We’re the water source for almost the entire state of California, and once people realize that it’s a nice place to visit,” Dahlmeier said.

Dahlmeier has done international interviews on the Oroville evacuation. Now she wants the world to know the name Oroville for all it has to offer.

“We have a ladybug migration; we have the second largest salmon migration,” Dahlmeier said.

The massive water releases into the Feather River are also prompting hope Oroville, which means ‘city of gold’, will have another gold rush.

Joey Wilson owns Adventures in Prospecting Mining Supplies.

“What people are getting excited about if they know anything about gold is that more gold is being exposed,” Wilson said. “So people are already starting to ask questions and buy equipment.”

Wilson says the pressure from all the water releases is loosening gold nuggets set in the river bottom.
He’s banking on a bump in business.

“It means more customers and of course more sales, and the ability to expand,” Wilson said.

With the spillway crisis now seemingly passed, how quickly can Oroville grab this global spotlight for something good.

“You know we have a chest of gold coins still to be discovered,” Dahlmeier said.

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