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Lake Management Planning Project Details 2017-11-17T15:33:42+00:00
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Lake Management Planning Project Details

Lake Management Planning Project Goal and Objectives:

Project Goal:

Sunset over Lake Winnebago (Photo credit: Kelly Reyer)

The goal of this project is to coordinate, communicate, and partner to develop a framework for cooperation throughout the region to improve upon existing programs and efforts that aim to restore or protect the health of the Winnebago Lakes. This includes facilitating communication among stakeholders (including residents and lake users) and multiple agencies to advance collaborative regional efforts that address topics such as: water quality, habitat, fisheries, recreation, public health, and aquatic invasive species.

Throughout the planning process, we will strive to foster positive, long-term relationships with a variety of stakeholders to develop consistent and realistic lake management practices that benefit lake health, area residents, and the local economy. 

Project Objectives:

In order to achieve this goal, the project will:

  • Advance lake management planning
  • Pursue grants and other funding
  • Engage the public and solicit input through outreach and education
  • Ensure project transparency

“The goal is not to create a new layer of government, but to provide a framework for cooperation that increases the effectiveness and efficiency of existing programs and efforts.” (ECT Report, 2014). Click HERE to learn more about past efforts on the System.

Winnebago Lakes – Lake Management Planning Project Area:

Lake Winneconne, Lake Poygan, Lake Butte des Morts, and Lake Winnebago

Click the map to enlarge

This map shows the Winnebago Lakes Management Plan (LMP) project area which consists of the HUC12 subwatersheds highlighted in color. HUC12 subwatersheds were used to determine the project boundary to ensure the resulting plan is consistent with other plans being developed in the region (ie. WI DNR TMDL). Project extent was determined by selecting HUC12 subwatersheds with boundaries that intersect one of the four lakes (Winnebago, Butte des Morts, Winneconne, Poygan). Parsons Creek-East Branch Fond du Lac River is one exception – it was added at the request of Fond du Lac County because of it’s known significance to the System. As data become available over the course of the project (ie. TMDL loading), the project boundary may be revised.

The project structure shown here provides a framework for the lake management planning process. While the basic structure of the framework will remain consistent throughout the project, Technical Teams and Focus Groups may change as new priorities or topics are realized. The framework was constructed in this way to accommodate the often dynamic process of developing a lake management plan for a large water body system.

Steering Committee: The Steering Committee drives the project and is made up of nine voting members and several non-voting, advisory members. An ad hoc committee will vote to choose the three members at large.

Technical teams are small groups of experienced conservation professionals. A Technical Team will be formed for each management topic. Technical Team leaders (one from each Team) will serve as non-voting, advisory members on the Steering Committee.

Focus Groups are groups of stakeholders including members of the public. Technical Teams help to facilitate Focus Groups and serve as a communication link between the Focus Groups and Steering Committee.

Winnebago Waterways Committee (WWC) is made up of County Executives/Administrators, County Board Chairs and the Land Conservation Committee Chairs for each county (3 seats for each county) or their approved designee from Fond du Lac, Calumet, and Winnebago Counties. County representatives on the Steering Committee will serve as the communication link between the Steering Committee and the WWC.

Technical teams are small groups of experienced conservation professionals. A Technical Team will be formed for each management topic. Technical Team leaders (one from each Team) will serve as advisory members on the Steering Committee.

Technical Team Tasks:

  • Assess, prioritize, and analyze key concerns and issues
  • Develop goals
  • Collect relevant information
  • Analyze and evaluate information; identify and address data gaps
  • Develop management objectives
  • Develop list of all possible management actions
  • With the help of Focus Groups, prioritize and recommend the best management actions

The following Lake Management Planning Technical Teams have been formed:

  • Aquatic invasive species & Aquatic plant management
  • Habitat, fish, and wildlife
  • Recreational lake use, access, and navigation
  • Water Quality

We will begin forming the following Technical Teams in early 2018:

  • Watershed Management
  • Shoreline Practices
  • Outreach & Education

Are you a conservation professional, educator, or researcher interested in serving on a Technical Team? Contact Korin at (920)851-0948 or korin@fwwa.org.

Focus Groups are made up of concerned members of the public and organizations (stakeholders). Technical teams help to facilitate Focus Groups and serve as a communication link between the Focus Groups and Steering Committee.

Focus Group Tasks:

  • Identify major concerns and issues
  • Help to ensure all relevant interests are adequately represented
  • Help with community education and outreach throughout the planning process
  • Provide input to help establish and clarify project goals
  • Assist with collection of data and information
  • Help develop evaluation criteria for reviewing management options
  • Provide input on preferred management actions
  • Provide input to help prioritize and select best management action recommendations

Interested in being part of the planning process? Sign-up for a Focus Group:

Focus Group Sign-up Form

The Steering Committee drives the project and is made up of nine voting members and several non-voting, advisory members.

Steering Committee Responsibilities:

  • Recommends finalize project goals and management objectives to the Winnebago Lakes Preservation Committee
  • Recommends consultants to fill gaps in information
  • Provides final recommendations to the WLPC based on focus group and technical team guidance
  • Drives project through to completion
  • Initiates and plans for implementation of LMP

The Winnebago Waterways Committee (WWC) was created under an Intergovernmental Cooperation Agreement. The WWC is comprised of the County Executive or County Administrator, the chair of the County Board from each County and the chair of each County Board’s Land and Water Conservation Committee from Fond du Lac, Calumet, and Winnebago Counties. County representatives on the Steering Committee report to the Winnebago Waterways Committee (WWC) and serve as the communication link between the Steering Committee and the WWC.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the Intergovernmental Cooperation Agreement.

Project Funding:

Calumet County, Fond du Lac, and Winnebago Counties contracted with Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance (FWWA) to help advance lake management planning efforts. To read more about the contract, CLICK HERE.

FWWA used the county money as match to leverage four, two-year Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) Surface Water Grants (one for each of the four lakes). FWWA received the grants in 2017. The DNR grants are supplying 50% of the funding for 2017 and 2018, with the other 50% being provided by the three counties.

Additional support for the project is being provided by several organizations through staff time: Fond du Lac County, Calumet County, Winnebago County, Waushara County, UW-Extension, East Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission, Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance, WDNR. We anticipate this list of supporting organizations to grow. For a full list of project partners, CLICK HERE.


If you are interested in becoming a contributing partner or would like to donate to the Winnebago Waterways Program or lake management planning efforts, please contact Korin Doering, Winnebago Waterways Program Coordinator, at (920)851-0948 or korin@fwwa.org

Opportunities to get involved – we want to hear from you!

Poygan Marsh Sunrise (user submission)

Effective and holistic lake management planning requires input from a variety of stakeholders including area residents, property owners, lake users, and people that rely on Lake Winnebago for their drinking water supply.

To ensure the planning process is truly collaborative, we invite you to participate. Join a Focus Group or sign-up for project updates. You can also send us feedback by clicking here.

Focus Groups are groups of stakeholders (such as area residents, lake users, and other members of the public) interested in actively participating in the development of a lake management plan.

Interested in participating on a Focus Group? Please click the link below to sign-up:

focus group sign-up form

Lake management planning is a collaborative effort involving several organizations including county staff, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance. As we build momentum for Lake Management Planning in 2017, we anticipate the number of participating individuals and organizations to grow. Click here to learn more about our project partners.

Stay informed about project events – sign-up for our program update email list.

Past events:

Download the Lake Management Planning project fact sheet

Click here

Stay informed with Project updates

Subscribe to the Winnebago Waterways email list

Subscribe to the project mailing list to stay up to date on events and opportunities to provide input during the planning process.

Comments or suggestions?

We’d love to hear from you!

feedback form

Lake Management Planning Updates

Blog articles from our e-newsletter, The Source

Sign-up for Winnebago Waterways updates

Request for Proposals – Winnebago Lakes Aquatic Vegetation Surveys, DUE: Nov. 29th, 2017

Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance (FWWA) is requesting proposals for aquatic vegetation point-intercept (PI) surveys of all four Winnebago Lakes (Poygan, Winneconne, Butte des Morts, and Winnebago) from qualified Subcontractors.  The Winnebago Waterways Program (WWP), with

Interagency coordination meeting: Regulation of the outflows from Lake Winnebago into the Lower Fox River – Oct 16th, 2017

Location: The Corps of Engineers’ Fox River and Wisconsin Operations Office, 2619 East Capitol Drive, Appleton, WI Date & Time: Monday, October 16, 2017 at 2:00PM (C.D.T) Hosted by: US Army Corps of Engineers