Home > Local Units > Manitowoc County Lakes Association

mantlogo2x2Unit Description: Manitowoc County Lakes Association was formed in 1997 in a crisis responseto prevent a winter fish kill on Weyers and Carstens Lakes. DNR and the Manitowoc County Fish and Game Protective Association had refused to assume legal liability for operating the aerators on these two lakes which did not have Lake Associations to assume the responsibilities. Individual leaders from the sportsman organizations and concerned lake owners quickly formed and incorporated a County Wide Lake Association under Wisconsin Lake law requirements. Liability insurance was purchased by the newly formed Association and hired the aerators on and narrowly averted a major winter fish kill, thus Manitowoc County Lakes Association (MCLA) was born. Lake stakeholders from around the county came together and developed this mission statement: “The Manitowoc County Lakes Association will protect and enhance the quality of area lakes and watersheds for the benefit of all.

Meeting Day: Bi-monthly on the 4th Thursday of odd months

Meeting Time: 6:30 PM- Open to the public

Location: The County Office Complex, 4319 Expo Drive

Club Membership: $15 Annual Membership

Website: www.manitowoccountylakesassociation.org

Note: The website contains lake maps for all of the inland lakes in Manitowoc County.

Contact: John Durbrow, President- mcla@lakefield.net


Poor water clarity is costing Manitowoc County property owners money. An analysis commissioned by Manitowoc County Lakes Association, conducted by Drs. Wolf and Kemp of the University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire, and supported by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has demonstrated that water clarity directly impacts the property value of residences on that water body. The report concludes “… that a 1 meter increase in water clarity will result in a 10.5% increase in home values for properties located within 250 meters of a lake.” Conversely, the more water clarity is degraded, the more property values are reduced. A hypothetical one meter increase in water clarity would add $32,051,300 to property values of residences associated with the Manitowoc County lakes.

The study analyzed 8,372 property transactions which occurred between 2013 and 2016 in Manitowoc and adjacent counties. They then correlated sales prices to the W-DNR satellite data for water clarity in the associated lake. Utilizing Hedonic Modeling, a technique to estimate the value of a specific attribute within a larger set of attributes which characterize a data set, the researchers isolated the impact of water clarity from all the other factors influencing a home’s value. The result clearly documents that water clarity is a significant determinate of property values. The study did not address any added value to a lake for recreational users or any subjective benefits which would derive from the higher water quality.

Clean Lakes are important to Manitowoc County. A survey conducted by the Manitowoc County Soil and Water Conservation Department ranked area lakes second among the resources most important to protect and improve, behind only groundwater. Yet several County lakes are listed as impaired waters by the EPA, primarily due to excessive levels of phosphorus (P). Phosphorus feeds algae growth, which reduces water clarity. As one pound of phosphorous will generate 500 pounds of algae, it is clear why the same survey noted above ranked chemical and nutrient runoff to streams and lakes as the highest concern for the Soils and Water Conservation Department.
The impact of water clarity on home prices study proposes a clear economic rationale for reducing phosphorus runoff and improving water quality in Manitowoc County lakes. See the full report at www.manitowoccountylakesassociation.org.
*$23,327 change in value of average home x 1,374 homes within 250meters of a lake in Manitowoc County

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