- Leaders in Oneida County want to know what you think of boathouses and piers on lakes in the county. The online survey they've put together could give them better information on the issues.
Planning and zoning workers say the two topics have been debated for years. Oneida County Planning & Zoning's Karl Jennrich says the county started allowing boathouses and regulating piers in 2000 when it rewrote its comprehensive plan.
The board looked at both topics a year ago, but didn't take any action to change current rules.
"When we brought the issue to the Oneida County Board of supervisors, there were supervisors that stated, we do not believe that you really had a sampling of all the citizens of Oneida County, so at that time they tabled it," Jennrich said.
Oneida County is one of the few counties in Wisconsin that regulates piers themselves rather than just following DNR guidelines. The county started regulating because of what they were seeing in other parts of Wisconsin.
"Reason being is they saw situations down in the southern part of the Wisconsin, on Lake Geneva in particular, where individuals were selling off boating spaces and you saw a proliferation of piers," Jennrich said.
Some believe a high number of boathouses damage the natural beauty of Northwoods lakes, but others think they add to the elements.
"Go on the Three Lakes chain, go on the Minocqua chain and you will see some magnificent boathouses, and some people love them," Jennrich said. "Other people just say it takes away from the natural aesthetic beauty of the Northwoods."
The county held a public hearing for both issues about a year and a half ago when the board was considering changes. Some supervisors didn't want to take action because they thought there wasn't enough feedback to accurately represent the community's beliefs.
That's why the planning & zoning department worked with their IT department and UW-Extension to put together a survey.
"They (supervisors) may not agree with some of the things that come forward, but I believe that not only my committee, but the Oneida County Board of Supervisors does listen to the constituents of Oneida County."
You can find the survey on the Oneida County website by clicking the announcement tab. We also have a link below. The survey closes on August 15th.
Boathouses and Piers Survey