County Wants Input on Boathouse and Pier Rules

Jul 15, 2014

A view onto Blue Lake, Minocqua
Credit P.Taylor,

At the direction of the Oneida County Board, the Planning and Development committee wants the public to take an on-line survey concerning boathouses and piers.

Both issues have been debated at length over several years by the county. When some changes were proposed in the boathouse rules, the board decided to get more input before making a decision. While the state has rules governing piers, counties can have rules more strict than the state rules, as Oneida county does.

Oneida County Planning and Zoning Director Karl Jenrich says public opinion on boathouses has been mixed...

".....the committee over the years has heard, 'either allow or have less restrictions on boathouses or we shouldn't have boathouses at all...."

Jenrich says after a public hearing a year ago, the board felt more input was needed before making a decision.

Regarding piers, Jenrich says Oneida county is one of the few with its own pier rules, with most counties opting to follow the DNR's less stringent guidelines. Jenrich says the survey will ask...

".....'do you think Oneida county should be in the business of regulating piers, even though the state regulates piers? Do you want Oneida county to be more restrictive than the Department of Natural Resources in the regulation of piers? Or do you believe that the pier restrictive is not restrictive enough? Or again, should Oneida county have pier regulations because Oneida county has so many lakes and should have local control....?"

The survey can be found at  or by going to the Oneida County government website and clicking on "Announcements".

The end date for the survey is August 15.  Jenrich says staff will compile the responses and report to the full county board this fall.