Bloomington To Consider New Fees For Lake Bloomington Boat Docks | WGLT

Bloomington To Consider New Fees For Lake Bloomington Boat Docks

Oct 5, 2018

Bloomington plans to implement a new permitting system for boat docks at Lake Bloomington to try to resolve issues with some dock owners that have been ongoing for years.

An ordinance the city council will consider on Monday night calls for dock owners to pay a $50 annual permitting fee. A permit for a new dock would cost $250, plus a $50 annual renewal fee.

City attorney Jeff Jurgens said the city wants to make sure those who own the docks live there and will make sure their docks are maintained.

"We want people who are going to be out there year round so they can oversee their dock, make sure it is maintained well,” Jurgens said.

Dock owners would also be required to have them insured and would be subject to city inspections to ensure they are in good repair and there are no hazardous materials or contaminants associated with the deck.

“We have to continue to ensure there’s continued peaceful enjoyment, that there’s no impact to the water, so there’s a lot of different things that this permitting structure includes,” Jurgens said. “Overall, we believe it will be a great benefit to the city and Lake Bloomington.”

The measure also caps the number of boat docks at 245; that's about 10 more than the city believes are already there. 

The city issued 24 compliance orders in April to dock owners who were violating city code either because they were for residents who didn’t have lakefront property or were built in areas of the shoreline that had been designated for public access.

The city had prepared to take each of the cases to administrative court. Jurgens said the new permits will resolve a majority of compliance issues the city has with dock owners.

City officials have said too many docks will jeopardize water quality at Lake Bloomington, one of the city's main water sources.

WGLT depends on financial support from users to bring you stories and interviews like this one. As someone who values experienced, knowledgeable, and award-winning journalists covering meaningful stories in Central Illinois, please consider making a contribution.