Lake Elmo council considers lake-use measure

Four Lake Elmo lakes would be opened for more recreational boating under a proposed ordinance revising no-wake rules on those lakes. The Lake Elmo City Council discusses the measure at its 7 p.m. meeting Tuesday night. (Photo courtesy of Lake Elmo)

Four Lake Elmo lakes would be opened for more recreational boating under a proposed ordinance revising no-wake rules on those lakes. The Lake Elmo City Council discusses the measure at its 7 p.m. meeting Tuesday night. (Photo courtesy of Lake Elmo)

LAKE ELMO — An ordinance allowing increased recreational use of four Lake Elmo lakes by lifting no-wake restrictions will be considered Tuesday by the Lake Elmo City Council.

The ordinance would place no-wake restrictions from sunset to sunrise on Lake Elmo, Lake Jane, Lake Olson and DeMontreville Lake, opening the four lakes to more daytime recreation use. The measure, proposed by Councilman Justin Bloyer and Councilwoman Nicole Park, also lifts some buoy-marker requirements.

“It would allow folks to use the lakes all day,” said City Administrator Dean Zuleger. “Compressing the time from noon to sunset limits usage.”

The council meets at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 3800 Laverne Ave North. Residents can comment on the proposed lake-use ordinance at about 7:30 p.m. and read the measure on the city’s web site, www.lakeelmo.org, or on the city’s weekly email newsletter, “Fresh: This Week in Lake Elmo.”

Currently, Lake Jane has wake restrictions from sunset to 9 a.m. and the other three lakes have wake restrictions from sunset to noon.

Zuleger said the current restrictions limit daytime recreational use of the lakes to trolling and slow-moving pontoon boats. Higher-speed activities such as water-skiing and wakeboarding have little time to be on the lakes.

The proposed lake-use measure would make wake regulations on the four lakes in accordance with basic state Department of Natural Resources rules on lake use and operations and allow for more consistant enforcement.

“It takes our ordinance to the bare-bones minimum,” Zuleger said.

All four lakes have seen increased use by recreational boaters over the last few years, Zuleger said. There are public boat launches on Lake DeMontreville and lakes Jane and Elmo and Lake Elmo borders Washington County’s highly popular Lake Elmo Park Reserve.

However, Zuleger said the proposal has received a mixed reaction among residents along the lakes. He said older residents prefer the current no-wake measure and younger residents want the lakes open to higher speed uses longer.

“Those lakes have always had restrictions on wake and noise to allow homeowners to have more quiet time,” he said. “It’s a generational split, which doesn’t surprise me.”

Contact Erik Sandin at erik.sandin@ecm-inc.com

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