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Monday, March 30, 2009

County Poor Farm Public Access to Lake Madison? Meeting Thursday!

Hey, neighbors, clear those calendars: the Lake County Commission is hosting a special meeting Thursday night to discuss opening the old county poor farm to create a new public access area on the west side of Lake Madison, just off Highway 19.

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This little patch of land, one of the last open plots along Lake Madison tucked between fancy-pants houses, has been mined for gravel and leased for farming. It became a point of contention this winter when the county commission considered leasing the shoreline portion of the poor farm's 150-odd acres to the state Game Fish & Parks Department, who wanted to pay the county for the privilege of building and maintaining a public access area. Fishermen and local media loved the idea; neighbors (at least a couple of them) did not.

Now we all get a chance to talk about it, including all those Lake Madison snowbirds who've all flocked back to South Dakota now that winter's done (just ignore that blizzard warning).

Comments are welcome here, but they're even more welcome in person, face-to-face, at the meeting. Come talk to your neighbors about the best use for our public resources. Thursday, April 2, 7 p.m., at the 4-H Grounds on Egan Avenue, south edge of Madison, quarter mile west from the white buffalo, across from the Bethel home.

I've got class that night... but my prof lives on Lake Madison! Maybe we'll both play hooky! :-)


  1. I hate to pour water on this hot idea, but the State GFP doesn't take care of the access points it already has, so why let them be involved in anything on County property?

    Johnson's Point access is only graded once a year so your vehicle and boat is beaten to a pulp by the time you get to the lake or leave the lake. The washboard is terrible on Johnson's Point Road and it should be graded every month or blacktopped to protect fisherman's boats.

    Stratton's access has never been upgraded by GFP and the road is taken care of by Mark Kreutzfeld who built a new home off Statton's state access point. The GFP doesn't do a thing to maintain that road or develop that lake access for fishermen.

    GFP controls the access by the old Marr's Beach area also on the west side near the poor farm project.

    County commissioners need to get a written agreement with GFP (Seeger) to ensure that these lake access points will be maintained properly to protect the investment folks make in their boats, jet skis and pontoons. The roads have to be better maintained by local GFP.

  2. How about letting GF&P get involved because they are willing to pay us (i.e., the county) for the privilege of doing this work for us?

  3. I don't remember the amount, but wasn't it about $5000 a year plus they front the upgrade costs?

    If the county sold that land, it would bring over $2 Million, and even at 4% interest, would create $80,000 a year income to the county if they never touched the principle.

    The folks that live over there in the big homes and condos don't want the public dumping their party garbage and all the noise from a public access area sandwiched between residential living. Who would?


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