February 7, 2013 at 9:46 a.m.
A couple members of the Lake Improvement District stepped down for 2013 and two new directors (actually one returning after last serving 10 years ago) were installed at the annual meeting Monday this week.
Steve Paquay will serve in the at-large seat vacated by Chris DuBose, (now residing beyond district borders) and past LID director Rick Ekstrand was voted into the seat representing that part of the district around Big and Little Green Lake, School Lake and Mattson Lake. Incumbents Al Wahlgren, Al Singer and Joyce Anastasi were returned to their LID Board positions by a show of hands of about 20 total attendees at the annual meeting.
Anastasi, who represents Chisago, Kroon and Spider Lakes, was named chair for 2013. Singer serves as representative of South Center, Ogren, Linn, Bloom and Swamp lakes. Wahlgren; on the LID Board for Lindstrom and Wallmark lakes, was also appointed to be the official LID member for the channelization feasibility task force. Restoration of a channel between North Lindstrom and North Center lakes, is currently under study.
The general channel route would be off North Center at the south end of Blue Waters trailer home neighborhood, through the low area, west under the bridge on Cty. Road 20 (North Lakes Trail), into North Lindstrom Lake. The Chisago County Board is collecting names of interested people from various area lake associations, business groups, city councils, etc. who’d also want to sit on the feasibility task force, and will announce task force details at a later date. The Lake Improvement District budget for 2013 has approximately $58,000 earmarked for the navigation project. Depending on how the concept advances there could be costs associated with environmental assessment, early permits and design. The LID budget as a whole puts total available funds for 2013 at $308,242 but about $150,000 is designated for expected liabilities associated with old business and with administering the LID.
The LID Board and the members of the public attending the annual meeting also heard an update on what the LID initiated in 2012. The budget includes $200 for carp management efforts of what has been provided through a Chisago Lakes Lions event. Steve Levy told the LID Board the support for the three-year old event is much-appreciated. This year the May “carp fest” is expanding and getting national attention with bow fishing groups. According to Levy the “carp fest” in 2013 will include many more lakes and will be an overnight event, which is when bow-fishers do their thing. Carp Fest will be limited to only taking the rough fish by bow. Watch for more details about the event and prizes later. It is tentatively scheduled for May 17.
Levy also noted for the LID Board, there’s an opportunity to install a rough fish barrier or some kind of control at the Linn Lake-to-South Center Lake inlet. He said carp fishers take hundreds of carp there at certain spawn-migration times. Carp are undesireable because they reproduce at a vastly greater rate than game fish and as bottom dwellers they affect the clarity of water.
~ The LID last summer also placed collection containers for waste lead sinkers, fishing line, etc. and Monica Kinney, technician, said the LID recycled “miles” of line, hooks and sinkers. She said the plastic debris is problematic for humans, for propellers and wildlife, and Berkley (manufacturer of fishing equipment) has a recycling program the LID works with. Look for the “Hook, Line & Sinker” drop-off displays at eight area boat landings when you are out on the lakes.
~ The LID and Soil and Water Conservation Dist. also partner to install erosion controls and rain gardens. The SWCD is also awaiting the final federal and state approval on an implementation plan addressing Total Maximum Daily Load of pollutants identified as impacting water quality and has a plan for projects to reduce the pollutant load of phosphorus entering the lakes. Casey Thiel of the SWCD told the meeting audience there are nine “impaired” lakes within the Lake Improvement District.
~ Weeds are also managed in partnership with lake associations. Last year the LID helped chemically treat acreage on North and South Center for the highly invasive Eurasian water milfoil. The LID budget for 2013 has $15,000 for partnerships like this.
~ The LID also aids in providing watercraft inspectors at boat access launches. Last summer there were 610 contacts made with boaters while inspections for invasive species and non-native plants were done. LID Board meeting schedule is unchanged for 2013 as the first Monday of every month, at the Government Center in Center City, at 6:30 p.m.
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