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IronDioPriest

Wright county: annandale boat inspection program will harm local economies

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IronDioPriest

Hi folks... I wanna specifically address fishermen and women, boaters, outdoorsmen and women, and their spouses and significant others. Also, anyone who believes that our right to access public waterways supported by our tax dollars, and managed for our benefit by the DNR, should not be infringed upon by special interests... listen up...

You may or may not know about a new program in Wright County to limit access to three lakes in the Annandale area where wealthy lake-home associations have coerced the County Board into implementing a pre-launch "AIS Inspection Station" in the city of Annandale. Anyone wishing to launch a watercraft on Lakes Sylvia, Pleasant, and John, must first travel to the city of Annandale (miles away from any boat landing), go through an inspection process, and be given permission to launch their boat in the form of a zip-tie on the trailer.

There are MANY problems with this inspection regime. One problem is its hours of operation. It is open from sunup to sundown. This means that if you wish to go fishing in the evening, or at night, or early in the morning, you must first travel to Annandale THE DAY BEFORE you wish to access the lake, and get your zip-tie. Needless to say, this will undoubtedly prove to be a big enough burden on boaters and anglers that many will simply choose to go elsewhere, which, we contend, is the unstated goal of the Lake Associations who have funded this effort to lobby the County Board. They want non-residents off "their" lake.

Another problem is the fact that these lakes are already unfortunately infested with AIS, which means inspecting boats on the way IN to the lake makes no logical sense. Only inspecting boats in their way OUT of an infested lake will have any chance of slowing or halting the spread of AIS.

Another problem is that local businesses in Annandale, Southhaven, and to a lesser extent Clearwater and Maple Lake, will be adversely affected by the reduction in commerce that WILL occur as people from outside these fine communities decide to take their watercraft elsewhere.

Another problem is the scope of this program, and the stated goals of those who are promoting it. They have said point-blank that they hope to have every county in MN look to Wright County as an example of what can be pushed through, as Lake Associations state-wide are organizing their resources and their political clout in an effort to see similar County ordinances implemented throughout Minnesota.

This could, in the future, lead to a scenario where every boater who does not own lake property will first be required to travel to a central County Inspection Station in whatever county they wish to launch their boat, before they will be given permission to launch at a lake that may be many miles away from the station.

We believe this is an infringement on the rights of Minnesota boaters and sportsmen to freely and responsibly access our public waterways. Even the DNR is skeptical of this program, but since it is a county matter, they are accepting it for now.

Sorry for the lengthy statement. Now I'd like to ask you to take action. We have organized a social media page, over 600-strong now.... Our goal is to gather as many concerned people as we can in this group - and then appeal to the Chambers of Commerce in these fine cities, to organize themselves and appeal to the County Board for a reversal of this misguided policy, on the grounds that it will harm them economically as people take their dollars elsewhere to avoid the infringement of the inspection regime.

If you haven't already, and you are concerned about liberty to access public waterways without undue burdens placed upon your access, would you consider lending your voice to ours, and joining our group? Thank you!

Join Us!

Edited by IronDioPriest
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jigginjim

If you live on the lake from what I have seen and heard they put the boasts ok n when nobody is at the ramp checking. So much for the great inspection, no decontamination after leaving the lake, that's a major issue I see. So far I have not seen any of the inspection crew at other lakes. Nobody on Constance, Buffalo or South ramp of Maple lake.

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Dash 1

Heard another meeting next Wednesday in Annandale.  If unable to make as I am, you can send your opinions to [email protected]

We need to get all our opinions and ideas out there or this could just be the beginning. 

I clean my boat religiously after each time out as I am sure most of us do, but limiting access just because I don’t want to waste time and money to drive out of my way to wash or inspect my boat is not right. How rediculous to inspect or wash before entering an infested lake and not after. Maybe the lake associations can put in a car/boat wash at each of their accesses. I know not realistic. 

I am OK with an education and testing yearly or better yet very three years and all would need this certification on them when towing, fishing, etc.  Law enforcement could ticket if out of compliance.  I am open to ideas, but do not limit honest people from accessing all public lakes.

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ozzie

pretty sure I heard one of these lakes, in the inspection program, since this has been implemented have now been found to have stoneystallwart or what ever the new bad invasive is called.  So much for this program being the new solution! 

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mrpike1973

That would be Pleasant Lake. If there inspection's are so good why did they get Stony? I'm not against getting checked just do it at the lake now because they didn't get there funding they want to add another 10 lakes to it. All political if they don't get what they want they just bull forward. I used to go to Sylvia a lot but now it's a hassle I bet they will lose more revenue with people not coming they may win the war but loose the battle. I have been in many of the meetings they only say the that there is a small opposition. They are not listening. My blood pressure gets to high so I better quit.

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IronDioPriest
57 minutes ago, ozzie said:

pretty sure I heard one of these lakes, in the inspection program, since this has been implemented have now been found to have stoneystallwart or what ever the new bad invasive is called.  So much for this program being the new solution! 

Yes, Pleasant Lake has had Starry Stonewort confirmed near the County access. The worst part of this is, Wright County and the self-interested lake associations were so bent on hindering access to these lakes via entry inspections, the ONLY thing that can prevent the spread of AIS - EXIT inspections - were largely abandoned. In all likelihood, the result it that Wright County and the three lake associations involved in this scam have been responsible for spreading Starry Stonewort from Lakes Pleasant and Sylvia to other lakes around Minnesota.

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DonkeyHodey

Encountered this this past weekend on pleasant lake.  I'm a little hot under the collar to say the least.

This is an absolute travesty.

 

(I'd like to highlight that the sign specifically outside the boat access says plan to come a day in advance if you want that "zip tie" thingy and, of course, the office where you can potentially get it is open 8-5 M-F (so no weekends or Holidays.))

 

Thinking of doing a little sunrise fishing?  Sorry.  (You should've "planned" to get your zip-tie a day in advance.)

Want to go fishing in the evening after a day working?  Sorry.

Want to spontaneously take the family out to the lake on a weekend or Labor day?  Sorry.

 

They can talk invasive species all they want...  It's all smoke-and-mirrors:  This is designed by the lake association to effectively make a PUBLIC lake a PRIVATE lake for the lakeowners. (...and all managed/enforced through PUBLIC tax dollars.   Frankly, I (as a tax payer) am paying to keep myself off the lake!!!!)

 

Again, this is an absolute travesty.

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ozzie

I agree with you that they are trying to privatize the lake and restrict access.  I go to an area of the state where if I want to land my boat at an access I am more than likely gonna have to deal with an Inspector on the way in and the way out.  Some do a good job and some not so good but the thing is they restrict very few from entering but they do send a couple boats a day off to the spray station to decontaminate prior to launching.  Is the system perfect no but neither are the homeowner that live around the lake and invest the waters in other ways such as fertilizer or septic tank or removing natural landscape/vegetation.  The system they are trying to implement in the Annandale area is a BS concept that is too restrictive to the average tax payer and benefits the lake homeowner too much!!!  sorry about the ramblings but the AIS fight bugs me as it is a losing effort and we (taxpayers) are getting the bill for a very flawed program. 

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slammer

This is total BS!  These actions will only continue unless someone can challenge it with legal action.  Why is our DNR allowing this to happen in the first place?    Because they are too political.   Its time they grow a pair and start putting a stop to this kind of insanity.   Do they forget who they work for and where their paychecks come from?  They cry about license sales dropping but if they allow this kind of thing to continue they will really see a drop off of revenue.  People will just say screw it.  

 

These wealthy lakeshore owners need to be put in their place.  These lakes are for everyone to use,  not just a few who think they are better than the rest of us.   Can I put up a roadblock on my street to stop traffic?   NO,  Id probably be arrested and thrown in jail!  How did this group get the OK to do this?  

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ShawnOnTheLake

Where is this meeting on Wednesday in Annandale?  I'd be interested in learning more about the reasoning and effectiveness of this program.  Mostly, it is very inconvenient and I'm not so sure that it is helping contain the problem.  I don't mind having people checking me at the landing itself, but when I have to travel all the way into Annandale first, that adds a lot of time to my outing that I could be spending on the lake!  If the Lake Association is using this as a means of just keeping boats off the lake, that's terrible! 

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synth999

Lake Sylvia has just about every invasive (found out it has Starry Stonewort last year) species anyway. Just need the spiny water flea and round goby to top it off.  Pretty crazy, I am more worried about what I bring out of that Lake. My folks have a cabin on the Lake and we usually venture to other lakes for bigger pike and numbers of Walleyes.  There are some big Walleyes in the lake but not big numbers. I fish it at night almost exclusively.  Very clear water and the recreation boat traffic can drive you crazy on nice weekends. Good weekday lake,  my neighbor lovingly calls it "Lake Fishin' Sucks". 

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synth999

I have literally had people tell they want me to leave when fishing Crappies on Sylvia, near docks, in the spring.  I am respectful and won't approach a dock when someone is already fishing. They come out of their Mansion, down to the dock, tell me to leave and blame me for wrecking "their" Lake. I proceed to tell them my family has been on the lake for over 60 years and to [email protected]#K OFF!

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synth999

I hope all the rich pricks need a tag when they try to put their boats in next spring. 

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gimruis
8 hours ago, synth999 said:

I have literally had people tell they want me to leave when fishing Crappies on Sylvia, near docks, in the spring.  I am respectful and won't approach a dock when someone is already fishing. They come out of their Mansion, down to the dock, tell me to leave and blame me for wrecking "their" Lake. I proceed to tell them my family has been on the lake for over 60 years and to [email protected]#K OFF!

 

I've run into this problem quite a bit bass fishing around docks on metro lakes, especially Lake Minnetonka.  There's a fine line between fishing around, under, and near the dock compared to actually banging your lure off dock.  I have relatives that are lake shore owners and I get it, they're just making sure people don't trespass or ruin their personal property but the water is not owned by anyone.  It is public domain.  The best solution I have found is to simply not fish a dock if there is someone present.  Move on to another one that has no one around.

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DonkeyHodey

Synth999:   They can say they will, but that's the kicker.--since the "zip tie" tag thingy needs to be in the windshield of the vehicle that's parked (or you get a ticket and a fine of up to $1000), it's SPECIFICALLY designed to scare away (or bust) lake users leaving a vehicle at the public access...

(So picture:  you own a cabin.  You simply launch your boat and drive your vehicle and trailer back to your cabin--I guarantee you no agents are going door-to-door and investigating for "zip ties"...  The Lake Association would definitely cry "FOUL" over that!)

 

Furthermore, let's talk true "spread" of invasives, right?   Said Pleasant lake owners can, in theory, take their boat on a whim (that, I'd point out, has been soaking in Pleasant lake for weeks and exposed to the Pleasant lake invasives), trailer it and drive to a neighboring lake (because fishing is always better in a different lake, right?) and subsequently, infest the neighboring lake (that, since it doesn't have an invasive species, subsequently won't have restrictions at their access) and return their boat all with no fear of repurcussions;  at no time during this hypothetical would they need to leave their boat at the Pleasant Lake access where the risk of fines are...

 

If, indeed, "boats" are the cause of invasives being spread (NOT exactly settled science, I'd like to point out...), shouldn't effort be spent on boats coming OUT of infested lakes?  But let's not bother with common sense here...  This isn't about limiting invasives; It's about limiting access and the DNR/authorities took the sucker-bait hook, line and sinker...

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synth999

Well, my dads farm ponds have milfoil and I don't think there has ever been a boat in ponds. I know John had Zebra Mussels are year before Sylvia. Sylvia, Mosses, Francis and the Crow River are Down stream. 

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leech~~
21 minutes ago, synth999 said:

Well, my dads farm ponds have milfoil and I don't think there has ever been a boat in ponds. I know John had Zebra Mussels are year before Sylvia. Sylvia, Mosses, Francis and the Crow River are Down stream. 

 

Others have reported milfoil in ponds as well. I still say Waterfowl is carrying it from water body to another.

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sweede

Urgent update!

 

Mar 19, 2019 Wright County AIS public meeting recap:

 

The Wright County passed the AIS ordinance today with a 3 to 2 vote. Now it is entirely up to the DNR commissioner to approve it. The Wright County commissioners said that if the DNR does not approve it by April 15th, the whole proposal is dead for good.

 

Here are some more details on today’s meeting. There were about 50 people attending, 99% lake shore owners. They all applauded the proposed ordinance (except for the self-certification part). One after another they spoke about how much trouble their lake is in and how much it has cost them to keep AIS at bay. They did a great job of presenting “the sky is falling” to the county commissioners (I always find it interesting that there is no mention of restrictions on lake shore owners using lawn fertilizer that turns the lakes into a green slimy mess. Seems to me that would be a no brainer if you really cared about the lake). Most made a point that they are not trying to privatize their lake and are offended when they hear that. On the other hand, not once did anyone mention that we need to come up with a better way that does not restrict access. Only one lone fisherman addressed the council and said that he bypassed the three test lakes last year and will bypass the additional lakes if this passes, too much hassle. Hmm, funny how that works. Imagine if this catches on and all the lakes are restricted, sell the boat I guess. There was also mention of a need for an exit inspection process. Not sure what that means, but didn’t sound like it would be in lieu of the proposed inspections and you may end up having to get inspected before and after you go to the lake.

 

Also of interest, the commissioners said they have received many inquiries from lake associations around the state and there were several other lake association representatives at the meeting to observe and see how they could implement this same strategy. So Wright County will be the test case for every county in the state to run with this. What a disastrous precedent. Not to mention the regulations and tags would be different for every county, making it cumbersome and impractical. The self-certification will have a cost of $10 to $40, so multiply that by how many counties you fish.

 

What you can do if you want to stop this from happening:

The entire fate of this proposal now rest on the DNR. The Wright County commissioners will meet with the DNR commissioner on Mar 21. If the DNR does not approve the plan by April 15, it will be dead. Send your concerns to these DNR contacts right away so that they receive it before they meet with the Wright County people.

 

[email protected]

[email protected]

[email protected]

[email protected]

[email protected]

 

 

PS,  you can read the emails send to Wright County on this link. Notice how organized the lake associations are with their form letter that you just sign and send. In particular, notice the one from the Clearwater association #34 on the page (see where this is heading?).

http://www.co.wright.mn.us/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/6489?fileID=13556

 

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BryonG

I say that if this gets passed, those lakes are on their own, no stocking, nothing supported by the dnr, if they want their lake all to themselves, they can support it. 

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creepworm
12 hours ago, BryonG said:

I say that if this gets passed, those lakes are on their own, no stocking, nothing supported by the dnr, if they want their lake all to themselves, they can support it. 

 

The issue with that is, the DNR strongly supports "AIS Prevention" such as these inspections. So I doubt the DNR will stop funding activities on lakes that are doing something they would like to see expanded.

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expl

I ran into a couple guys at the gas station when getting minnows today and we started chatting about this.For access to these lakes without an inspection they said this is what you want to do-Have someone who isnt going fishing come with you and launch your boat they drive away with truck and trailer and come pick you up later.Not a great option for all but if you live nearby the restricted lakes they said this works.I like their style

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Paradice

This seems an awful lot like the CWD response.  Won't really stop anything except the sport itself.  

 

Sounds like another successful DNR initiative, and a model for the rest of the state owned waters.  If you guys don't stop it there, it's going statewide.  

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MinDak Hunter
2 hours ago, Paradice said:

This seems an awful lot like the CWD response.  Won't really stop anything except the sport itself.  

 

Sounds like another successful DNR initiative, and a model for the rest of the state owned waters.  If you guys don't stop it there, it's going statewide.  

I’m not sure this is a DNR initiative, this is all Wright Co and Lake Associations.

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creepworm
On 3/22/2019 at 9:02 PM, MinDak Hunter said:

I’m not sure this is a DNR initiative, this is all Wright Co and Lake Associations.

 

With DNR support, seeing DNR support is necessary to implement these initiatives.

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MinDak Hunter

I’ve been to a bunch of these meetings and according to the Wright Co. SWCD the DNR is required by law to ratify the plan once it comes together and meets the requirements in State Statutes. I haven’t looked it up myself but that’s what was told to the Commissioners. 

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