(La Porte County, IN) - The Department of Natural Resources has awarded grant money that will help keep area lakes clean.
The LaPorte Parks Department has received $7,600 for Clear Lake, while the La Porte Area Lake Association won a nearly $40,000 grant for Pine and Stone lakes. Hudson Lake also received $24,600.
The funds are being used to pay for removal of non-native and invasive aquatic plants in the lakes.
It’s an ongoing process, which Parks Superintendent Mark Schreiber says has really paid off in recent years. “For the most part, we’re talking about Eurasian milfoil,” he said, “which was really a huge problem on our lakes probably ten or fifteen years ago—so bad that it almost looked like you could walk across the lakes on this stuff.” Thanks to regular support from the DNR, those invasive species have been mostly eliminated.
But, as a result, other native plants have cropped up, especially on Pine Lake. “That’s partly because we had warmer, hotter summers, and we haven’t had a whole lot of ice coverage in the winter time,” Schreiber said. “So we’re hopeful this year, with the amount of ice that we had, that maybe the native [plants] won’t be as big a deal.”
Grants are funded through boater registration fees across the state.