All Eyes Are on Vermont as February 1st LCAR Meeting Approaches 

Vermont is not the only state currently seeking to manage wake boats and wake sports. Wisconsin, with its 15,000 lakes, has a lot at stake when it comes to the wake boat issue. As seen in the photo below, a few Wisconsin towns have already passed ordinances restricting wake boat activity as there is widespread interest in this issue. Moreover, Wisconsinites are also paying close attention to what is happening here in Vermont. A January 11 article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel entitled, “Vermont Making Waves with Proposed Rule to Restrict Wake Surfing on Lakes” began as follows: “As states and local lake associations grapple with concerns over wake-enhanced boating, Vermont issued a proposed state rule to restrict the activity.

A sign installed at Diamond Lake in Bayfield County, Wisconsin, lists a prohibition on wake surfing. The restriction was approved in 2023 by the local town board. 

As a member of the National Partnership of Lake Advocates, Responsible Wakes for Vermont Lakes (RWVL) shares information about the status of wake boating with other states. When asked about the impact of Vermont’s ANR petition in their state, partners and other supporters offered comments such as the following:

  • From Massachusetts. “If there’s a way to keep your foot in the door to revisit the 500′ limit after monitoring shows adverse impact, go for it.  I wonder who will be there to monitor whether they even obey that limit.  It is difficult to understand why they come up with engine designs that are so ignorant of environmental/ecological impact in this day and age.
  • From Wisconsin. “We issued a press release this morning, applauding Vermont’s actions. …The victory you’ve achieved is historic and will set the tone for dialogue in the other states, including Wisconsin. Keep up the great work!”
  • From Idaho.“We’d be thankful for what VT has settled on here and hope to use it as a model for our discussions going forward, either at the local or state level.”
  • From Maine. “Thank you to all the Vermont folks for the hard work and research that went into the proposal.  Despite not getting the same results in Maine (at least the first time), the Vermont research has moved the ball forward and we are very appreciative.”

It is clear that many eyes are on Vermont, as our state’s ANR petition process approaches its conclusion. We are buoyed by the support of other states and hope that Vermont will set an example that our state can be proud of.

Please continue to share your thoughts and comments with us and stay tuned in.

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