Goals and Accomplishments


2017 Accomplishments & 2018 Goals (DRAFT)

2017 Goals (in bold) with Accomplishments listed below:

I.  Increase involvement and improve communication with more lake associations.

  1. Distributed 2016-17 Goals and Accomplishments to all lake associations to share with members.
  2. Shared area lake association newsletters submitted to ICOLA to other member associations, including posting on ICOLA website.  We have solicited submission of member newsletters for the website.
  3. Renewed discussion on the value of ICOLA for Lake Associations.
  4. Revised the ICOLA logo for a more modern appearance.
  5. At every ICOLA meeting, lake association members exchanged reports on activities and accomplishments. Some examples are: prevention of Aquatic Invasive Species, increased inspections and enforcement at accesses, identification and eradication of AIS, support for the Firewise program, loon counts, boat parades, potlucks, partnering with Let’s Go Fishing with Seniors, Share the Lake day, shoreland restoration to reduce sediment erosion, reviewing and providing input to DNR on slot limits, coordination with townships and fire department to install water storage tanks for increased fire protection, efforts to resolve flooding and shoreland erosion problems due to high water.
  6. Continued to partner with IWLP, SWCD, and the Itasca AIS program to host a booth at the Itasca County Fair.
  7. Our new President Patty Gould St. Aubin has provided a “President’s Goals for 2017-18.”
  8. Participated in a survey of lake associations co-sponsored by Concordia College and Minnesota Lakes and Rivers Advocates.

II.   Support ongoing diagnostic studies and expansion of those studies to additional lakes.

  1. Participated in a series of meetings for the Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) study by the Minnesota PCA and partners including SWCD to study the health of the Mississippi River Headwaters, the Mississippi Grand Rapids and the Big Fork watersheds in Itasca County.
  2. Encouraged lake associations to make use of the water lab opened at ICC by RMB Environmental Labs.
  3. Continued to encouraged members to examine for accuracy and missing data in the Water Quality Assessment Reports assembled by RMB Environmental Labs for the final Report; we then distributed the report to members and heard a presentation from local RMB representative.
  4. ICOLA renewed offer to provide a roll-out meeting for the Water Plan Update, to be done by the Water Plan Implementation Committee (WPIC) and SWCD, but the Update has been postponed.ICOLA will be ready and willing for this when the Update is rescheduled.

III.   Support education and implementation of improved shoreland management.

  1. Assessed nominees and presented Shoreland Stewardship Awards to selected property owners who were examples of outstanding shoreland management practices; in 2017 the awards went to the rain gardens installed at KAXE and the YMCA.
  2. Provided funds for the SWCD Envirothon, an educational event for youth to learn about environmental stewardship.
  3. Provided a presentation on environmental landscaping and buffers as well as other educational and informational speakers at meetings during the year. 
  4. Annual meeting featured Scott Lucas (MPCA) for a presentation on the Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) on both the Mississippi Headwaters and the Mississippi Grand Rapids watersheds.
  5. ICOLA members participated in various educational events in Itasca County, including the IWLP Youth Summit, Earthday events, the Healthy Watershed Conference, WRAPS meetings, the “State of the Waters” conference (Freshwater society and MN Extension), and the AIS Summit sponsored by Minnesota Lakes and Rivers Advocates.
  6. Continued to monitor the Ecofootprint grant for follow-up action on phosphorous reduction as recommended by the Deer-Pokegema Diagnostic (2013).
  7. Continued planning to update the ICOLA brochure.
  8. Provided funding for a new statewide effort: “Freshwater Conservation Fund.”

IV.    Promote education about Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) and activities to prevent the spread of AIS.

  1. Worked with the statewide organizations such as MN COLA and MLRA to successfully preserve legislation enacted and funding appropriated to prevent the spread of AIS.
  2. Participated in the “Starry Trek 2017” search for starry stonewort in county lakes.
  3. Continued to provide two AIS Tech Committee representatives to participate in numerous meetings to draft and implement action plans for AIS in Itasca County, taking responsibility for the Citizen Action Projects (CAP) within the Itasca AISP.
  4. Followed up the CAP to hire RMB Labs to perform risk assessments on many prominent lakes for AIS favorable habitat, including the calcium content of lake water.
  5. Participated in a spending survey by MN COLA on AIS from non-governmental sources.
  6. Invited Megan Weber (UM Extension Educator) to provide a presentation on the MN Extension “Detector and Tracker” programs.
  7. Continued AIS table tent and posters distribution urging awareness of AIS and the law to “pull the plug!”
  8. Continued working with IWLP and the AISP to staff the county fair booth in a highly visible central location and distributed water quality and AIS ID/awareness materials.  
  9. Worked to develop an AIS insert for our “Taking Care of Waters” brochure.
  10. Began co-sponsorship for a Multi-Region Resort Ambassador Project about AIS.

V.     Continue collaboration with Itasca Water Legacy Partnership (IWLP) and other water-oriented partners.

  1. ICOLA members successfully collaborated with IWLP to host Youth Water Summit.
  2. ICOLA Board Members continue to serve on the IWLP Board, and vice-versa.
  3. Continued partnership with IWLP to host meetings with County and participated in public information sessions on AIS funds available and the need for urgent action.
  4. Continued membership with Minnesota Lakes and Rivers Advocates, with ICOLA members attending MLRA meetings.
  5. Continued membership with Minnesota Coalition of Lake Associations, sending representatives to their several meetings.
  6. Participated with IWLP and helped to provide funding for a new water-oriented brochure for Itasca County (to replace the older “Northwoods Guide”).
  7. Considered how ICOLA and IWLP can work more closely, perhaps as a merger.

VI.   Participate in County Governmental proceedings, such as the County’s Comprehensive Plan, Water Plan, Zoning Ordinance and zoning variances.

  1. Encouraged members to be involved in all aspects of County Government.
  2. Continued to send a representative to the Itasca County Water Plan Implementation Committee.
  3. Continued to support the Itasca County Firewise program.
  4. Provided updated mailing lists of Lake Association Officers to Itasca County Environmental Services, the DNR and SWCD.
  5. Helped to find volunteer candidates for various county committees and boards.


2018 Goals:

1. Increase involvement and improve communication with more lake associations.

2. Support and participate in research studies and “citizen science” projects.

3. Support education and implementation of improved shoreland management and water quality.

4. Work to prevent the introduction and limit the spread of AIS.

5. Continue collaboration with Itasca Water Legacy Partnership (IWLP) and other water-oriented partners.

6. Participate in County Governmental proceedings, such as the County’s Comprehensive Plan, Water Plan, Zoning Ordinance and zoning variances.

2017-2018 Meetings

(Third Wednesdays, Itasca County Courthouse at 7pm, except as noted)

October 18, 2017

February 21, 2018 (moved this year only to March 21)

April 18, 2018

June 20, 2018

July 18, 2018 (Annual Business Meeting in Marcel Town Hall with potluck): 5:30pm

October 17, 2018 (Itasca County Courthouse)

ICOLA Goals-Accomps 2016-17