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Residents Could Face Fine if they Use Chemicals to Fight Lake Weeds
Okoboji area homeowners could find themselves paying a hefty fine if they use chemicals to kill weeds that ensnare their boats, tangle swimmers and spoil weekends on the lakes.

Rep. John Wills, a Republican from Spirit Lake, has proposed a bill that makes it a serious misdemeanor for Iowans to use chemicals to battle aquatic weeds such as curlyleaf pondweed.

The fast-growing invasive plant is overrunning parts of the Iowa Great Lakes, choking East Okoboji and Lower Gar, and threatening West Okoboji and Spirit Lake.

The bill, making its way to the House floor for debate, would allow the Iowa Department of Agriculture to fine Iowans $1,000 for dumping chemicals into a lake that’s used for drinking water.

The bill would allow licensed applicators to use chemicals to kill aquatic weeds.

Otherwise, homeowners can pull the weeds by hand or with a rake or have them mechanically cut.



 
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Dam Owner Holds Water Hostage on Friendship Lake - Weeds and algae are prolific on Friendship Lake. While the Lake District owns a weed harvester, they are unable to launch due to low water levels. Dam owner/operator Chuck Pheiffer claims it is safer to operate the dam with the low water levels and will not release water to replenish the lake, but is willing to sell the hydroelectric dam.


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