Minutes for Saturday, March 13th 2018 – Executive Committee


TIME & PLACE: The Executive Committee (EXCOM) meeting of the Teal, Lost Land and Ghost Lakes Improvement Association was held Saturday, March 13, 2018, at the home of Gayle Little in Hayward. The meeting was called to order by President Dave Neuswanger at 2:20 pm.

EXCOM members Dave Neuswanger (President), Norm Bratteig (Vice President), and Gayle Little (Treasurer) were physically present. EXCOM Members Gail Nicholson (Secretary) and Steve Fiala (Director-at-Large) participated by telephone.


1. MINUTES and REPORTS: The minutes from the last meeting were approved with two changes suggested by Dave.

a. Since she made the last edits, Gayle Little will make the changes and give a copy with the changes to Gail Nicholson.

b. Dave will summarize what happened at the meeting for the website.

c. Gayle Little presented a copy of the Treasurer’s report. The total receipts for 2017 were $22,866.94. The total disbursements for 2017 were $20,533.08. The total balance on hand as of 12/31/17 was $8,128.16.

2. Dave Neuswanger has been going through the seven boxes of stored file materials that were given to him when he became President in July of 2017. After discarding draft materials, redundant copies, outdated publications, and trivial or dated correspondence, the number of boxes has been reduced to two.

3. Dave Neuswanger presented the idea of appointing program leaders who would be approved by majority agreement of the Executive Committee, and could include Executive Committee members themselves. The Program Leaders would work on specific areas and would recruit and organize volunteers to help with specific program areas of need.
This type of organization may warrant review of the committee structure embedded in our By-Laws. All program leaders would be invited, though not necessarily expected, to attend all EXCOM meetings. The goal would be to choose program leaders and establish a pool of volunteers interested in one or more programs at the upcoming summer meeting of members.
A potential list of “programs” requiring leaders and possible leaders:
– AIS Monitoring and Response (Norm Bratteig?)
– Fishery Management (Dave Neuswanger?)

– Shoreline Habitat Enhancement (John Grady?)
– Water Quality Monitoring (Bryan Neuswanger?)
– Property Management (Mike Brandt?)

4. Norm Bratteig reported that he and Mike Brandt re-roofed the shelter on McKnott Island recently. Mike donated the materials and he and Norm provided the labor.

5. Website:

a. Dave hopes to produce a quarterly president’s message on the home page of our website, obviating the need for a separate newsletter.

b. The fish stocking table has been updated by Dave to include October 2017 stockings (Teal Lake by WDNR and Lost Land by QLIA with private funds).

c. History Page: Charlie Baumann’s 50-Year Golden Jubilee History book (51 total pages, including appendices) will be scanned by Norm Bratteig and delivered to Dave for publication on our website. Resorts, families, and individuals should be encouraged to submit historical pictures and stories to go with the pictures for posting on the website.

d. Gayle Little will contact Rex Clevenger about our plans to discontinue the blogsite that Rex so generously funded and maintained for several years before we had a website. We will strive to retain quality photos and items of historical significance for transfer to the website. The EXCOM sees value in having all QLIA information in one place that is easily accessible by members and the public.

e. The QLIA membership renewal form will be on the website, where we will seek to acknowledge those who have paid for 30 years and are now classified as lifetime members. There was a discussion about whether to include recognition of special donations, except for donors who specifically indicate that they do not want to be recognized.

f. Gayle will revise the membership/dues form and send it to EXCOM members for review before publishing online.

6. Water Quality Monitoring: Based on “Chlorophyll a” data collected by QLIA volunteers, WDNR placed Teal Lake onto EPA’s list of “impaired waters” as authorized under Section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act of 1972. Essentially, the WDNR believes there was too much algae in Teal Lake during the most recent assessment period (2012-2017). Dave does not agree with this “impaired water” classification for Teal Lake and has had several communications with WDNR regarding the assumptions and technical analysis leading to the “impaired water” listing. This was a highly questionable determination that arbitrarily omitted June data and yet included July-August data from an atypical drought year (2012), thus biasing data to the high side. WDNR also changed statistical protocols in a way that raised the bar for removing a lake from the “impaired waters” list once it appears there.

Dave documented the analytical debate in a lengthy story on our website. Additional monitoring will be needed if there is any hope of getting Teal Lake removed from the WDNR list of “impaired waters,” so we need to resume our commitment to water quality monitoring.

Toward this end:

– Dave researched and purchased a new YSI Pro20 Field Polarographic Dissolved Oxygen/Temperature meter with 10-meter cable and carrying case for use by the Water Quality Program Leader. Dave requested reimbursement from Association funds in the amount of $1,144.46 (charged to his personal VISA). The EXCOM voted unanimously to reimburse Dave for the purchase of the meter and related items.

– Late January testing in the deep hole off Christy Point in Steamboat Bay of Lost Land Lake revealed that dissolved oxygen was below levels conducive to normal fish activity (5 mg/L) at depths greater than 10 feet – a normal mid-winter stratification phenomenon.

– Bryan Neuswanger has agreed to serve as Water Quality Program Leader, but he will need help collecting/shipping samples for analysis from Lost Land and Teal lakes. Norm Bratteig and Steve Fiala agreed to help Bryan. Bryan will need to get an ID from DNR to be the coordinator and Program Leader for lake sampling.

– Monitoring of lake quality on Ghost Lake, could be completed by Terry Conroy. Terry has been doing some water testing there. Bryan Neuswanger will help to train Terry on the use of the meter to sample the water in Ghost Lake.

7. AIS Management: The EXCOM discussed the possibility of treating Steamboat Bay on Lost Land Lake with Reward herbicide (Diquat) to control the Hybrid Eurasian Water Milfoil. A vote was taken, and a 4-1 majority determined that the herbicide should be administered in the spring of 2018 if last year’s treatment of the upper lake continues to produce unexpectedly lasting control.
The EXCOM will continue to evaluate the efficacy of Diquat before initiating a fundraiser for the purchase of an Eco-Harvester to mechanically control the HEWM. Dave stressed the need for this decision to be “data dependent.”

8. Boating Ordinance: Gail Nicholson provided an overview on the Boating Ordinance, based on the historical file that was provided by David Neuswanger at the October, 2017 EXCOM meeting. The Ordinance was initially passed in 1956 and is found in Spider Lake Ordinance # 12 § 5(a). (See www.townofspiderlake.org) The Ordinance was most recently updated in June of 2006. It provides that boating speeds on the waters within Spider Lake Township shall not exceed 10 mph (except Fawn Lake and during certain hours on Ghost Lake and Lower Clam Lake).

The penalties related to the violation of the ordinance are found in § 30.80 (www.docs.legis.Wisconsin.gov § 30.50 – §30.80) under the sections on State Boating and Water Safety Laws. Section 2 of the Spider Lake Township Ordinance states that “The provisions of this ordinance shall be enforced by any authorized safety and or law enforcement officer of the Town of Spider Lake or any other authorized law enforcement officer.” In a 1959 letter from the Sawyer County District Attorney, the DA asserts that the State has jurisdiction over the lakes in the township, and the State allows the township to adopt reasonable ordinances related to motor boating and reckless motor boating. He also cautions the parties to assure that individuals are not deprived of their rights in the use of any of the inland lakes in the state. The DA asserts that the Chairman of the Town Board should cause any action to be commenced and should obtain counsel on behalf of the town.
A letter from Charlie Baumann discussed the case of Stanley and Marie Zajac, Plaintiff vs Town of Spider Lake, heard on October 7, 1962 in Sawyer County. The Plaintiffs argued that the Ordinance was arbitrary, unreasonable, and discriminatory, because Teal and Lost Land Lakes do not allow water skiing and other lakes in Spider Lake Township allow water skiing at certain times. In a July 29, 1963 Court Judgement related to both speed and water skiing on Teal and Lost Land Lake, a Declaratory Judgment by Judge Clarence Rinehard declared that the Ordinance was valid and was “…acting in the Interest of Public Health and Safety.” (After a general town meeting, at which testimony was made regarding parapalegics who depended on the Ordinance for their safety and well being, and the weedy conditions and rocks in the water created current and potential safety issues for water skiing.)

In April, 1975, a Water Patrol Ordinance was voted into law at the Spider Lake election and annual meeting. The Ordinance called for a constable and four deputies to maintain regularly scheduled patrols of Lost Land, Teal, and Spider Lakes each day from approximately June 1st until approximately June 30th. The patrols were designed to enforce all boating regulations including speeding, life jacket requirements, swimming area protection and water skiing safety. The constable and his deputies were to be instructed by the sheriff’s office and the DNR on law enforcement. The first violation was to be a warning ticket and the second, a summons to appear in court. A budget of $3,000 was approved to administer the ordinance. A fee of $5.00 per hour for man, boat, and motor was to be paid to the constable and his deputies. The monies were to be reimbursed by the DNR up to 100%, depending on the availability of funds.
According to Jim Imse from the Quiet Lakes Board, there were mixed opinions regarding Association funding for enforcement of the Ordinance. After a request for membership input, 43 letters regarding funding for enforcement were received in 2006. Of those, 28 were for funding, and 15 were against. There was some question as to whether some of the 15 were duplicates.

According to Wayne Ringquist, Natural Resources Program Director at DNR, a “no wake” ordinance is more easily enforceable than a 10 mph speed limit. (Nobody has proposed that as a lakewide rule on the Quiet Lakes.) Due to our long and complex history with this Ordinance, the EXCOM decided to table this item pending further review and discussion.

9. Public Boat Ramp Closure: Dave Neuswanger presented information regarding WDNR’s decision to close and rebuild the public boat ramp on Lost Land Lake starting the week after Memorial Day weekend and extending approximately six weeks. Ralph and Helen Hlavin of The Retreat on Lost Land Lake submitted a permit requesting permission to repair their resort boat ramp. If approved and completed before Memorial Day Weekend, Ralph and Helen are willing to allow the general public to be redirected to their location for launching of boats onto Lost Land Lake during the reconstruction period of the WDNR public access. The EXCOM gave Dave permission to speak to any Town of Spider Lake venues about our endorsement and support of this use of the boat ramp.

10. Spring Fishery Management Activity: Dave Neuswanger presented the following information regarding WDNR fisheries operations that are planned for early and mid spring of 2018.

– Shortly after ice-out, the WDNR Fisheries Management crew from Hayward will set fyke nets in Lost Land and Teal lakes (probably 6 nets per lake), fishing them overnight for 2-3 nights and running them daily in order to assess population status of adult walleye and northern pike. This is part of their quadrennial baseline monitoring protocol.

– A week or two later as water temperatures exceed 50F, WDNR crews from the Thompson Hatchery at Spooner will spend 1-2 weeks running fyke nets in Lost Land and Teal lakes for the purpose of collecting and fertilizing eggs of adult muskellunge. Eggs will be hatched in Spooner, where the fingerlings will be reared to 10-12 inches for stocking throughout NW Wisconsin in the fall. Concurrent with this effort, WDNR Fisheries Management will work with the Thompson Hatchery crew to assess populations of yellow perch, black crappie, and adult muskellunge
captured in the fyke nets.

– As water temperature rises into the low- to mid-60s, the WDNR Fisheries Management crew from Hayward will conduct nighttime electrofishing surveys in Lost Land and Teal lakes (probably one night per lake) for purposes of assessing the status of largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, bluegill, pumpkinseed, suckers, and juvenile walleyes. This too is part of WDNR’s quadrennial baseline monitoring protocol.

– Max would really appreciate some real-time reporting on the status of iceout on Lost land and Teal. He could also use some volunteer help during all these operations. Dave can coordinate volunteer ice-out reporting and assistance with field work (usually will have ~48 hours of notice). According to Dave, Bill Boersma on Teal Lake has ice-out information for the past fifty years.

– There will be no fishery operations at Ghost Lake this year.

11. Adjournment: A motion was made, and seconded to adjourn the meeting, and a unanimous vote was held. The meeting was adjourned at 4:45 pm.

Submitted by Secretary Gail Nicholson on June 22, 2018

Conditionally Approved by the EXCOM on June 22, 2018