updated 8/10/2022 HOME
Education Collaboration Advocacy
Tourist Rooming Houses are changing the lake experience for many visitors
Tourist Rooming Houses (TRH) are rapidly becoming a common feature on Oneida County’s lakeshores. Visitors in search of the Northwoods vacation experience use on-line services such as Airbnb or Vrbo to discover short-term lake home rental opportunities. Second-home owners are taking advantage of this expanding rental market. As a result, many traditional lakeside family cabins and second homes are functionally transitioning from single family residences to lucrative businesses, some with distant corporate ownership.
This raises a few questions on the lake. How might this rapid transition on our lakeshores impact; ...lake ecology? …a busy lake’s recreational capacity? …a lake association’s ability to engage shoreland owners and users in lake improvement activities?
On the regional level, what impact does this trend have upon local housing prices and availability? What impact does the paucity of available housing have upon our local economy? Do county planning and zoning departments have the capacity to effectively regulate over 1,000 Tourist Rooming Houses?
OCLRA has these messages for short term renters and TRH lake property owners:
Northwoods Businesses for Clean Waters Program
The program is designed to create partnerships between conservation professionals and local businesses that rely on water resources, and to protect lakes and rivers vital to the Northwoods economy and recreation. Targeted businesses will include; fishing guides, docks and lifts sales, bait shops, watercraft rentals, boat dealers and campgrounds. OCLRA has joined with the Vilas County Lakes and Rivers Association (VCLRA) to help sponsor the program.
Watch this space for more information.
RESOURCES FOR LAKE GROUPS:
Our popular collection of essays on best practices for lake stewardship, lake science and shoreland restoration is available on this site to read and to download.
(click on "DO THE RIGHT THING" above) We also provide booklets in quantity for groups and organizations for a small donation.
Another successful annual 6-County Event
Northwoods lake leaders and lake lovers joined together at Nicolet College in Rhinelander on July 15, 2022 to discuss current lake protection issues. Over 120 attendees came from Vilas, Oneida, Lincoln, Iron, Forest and Langlade counties for the in-person event.
This year's theme centered upon our northern lakes' capacity to withstand rising developmental and recreational pressures. Discussed were changing trends in short-term tourist rooming houses, invasive species, access/viewing corridors, wake boating, and their impacts upon lake health and traditional shoreland neighborhoods.
The annual 6-County Event is jointly sponsored by the Vilas and the Oneida County Lakes and Rivers Associations.
A Successful Annual Event;
2021 Northwoods Six-County Lakes Meeting
Lake group leaders and members from northern Wisconsin convened via Zoom for a discussion of natural shorelines, lake stewardship, and other current issues related to lake quality and protection on Friday, July 16th.
The teleconference explored initiatives both planned and underway to encourage lake property owners to keep their shorelines natural and take other measures to help protect water quality, safeguard fish and wildlife habitat, and sustain healthy lake ecosystems. Attendees were invited from Oneida, Vilas, Forest, Langlade, Iron and Lincoln counties. The session was led by Pat Goggin, lake specialist at the UW Extension Lakes. Nine presenters included lake leaders and experts from Wisconsin and Minnesota. Breakouts for meetings of county lakes and rivers associations were held after the program.
The event was sponsored by the Oneida County Lakes and Rivers Association (www.oclra.org) and the Vilas County Lakes and Rivers Association (www.vclra.org).
View video recordings of each of the conference presentations by clicking below:
Other Recent Events:
OCLRA Hosts Session as a part of
Wisconsin Water Week - 2021
OCLRA was part of the program at Wisconsin Water Week, a virtual event for 2021, replacing Wisconsin's annual lakes and rivers convention. 30+ attendees heard Walter Piper, lead researcher for the Loon Project provide an update on recent findings. Bob Thome of Lake Julia and Oneida County commissioner provided an update on recent Oneida County Board water-related activities, and Jim Kavemeier of Tomahawk Lake and Dan Butkus of Squash Lake provided an update on how to promote and develop natural shorelines. Dan also served as event moderator. Attendees joined in with questions for the presenters.
ANOTHER SUCCESSFUL 6-COUNTY LAKES MEETING WAS HELD ON FRIDAY, JULY 10, 2020:
The lively discussions explored ways to encourage lake property owners to follow lake-friendly and environmentally responsible practices.
Click below to view recordings of the speakers' presentations:
The event was jointly sponsored by OCLRA and the Vilas County Lakes and Rivers Association (www.vclra.org). We thank all involved for an outstanding event.
PROTECTING OUR WATERS:
Proposed mining activities may return to threaten Oneida County waters
Badger Minerals has conducted exploratory drilling in the town of Schoepke. The activity has taken place in close proximity to the Wolf River in southeastern Oneida County.
A few miles downstream, the Langlade County Board has registered its opposition to the proposed mining activity.
In 2017 through the passage of 'Act 134', the Wisconsin legislature repealed our 'Mining Moratorium Law' . This has resulted in reduced protection of our Wisconsin waters and diminished local government controls .
Oneida County Clean Waters Action calls upon area municipalities to resolve to support the repeal of Wisconsin 2017 Act 134.