INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana Department of Natural Resources grants, totaling more than $585,000, will be used to fight invasive aquatic plants in Indiana’s lakes. Some of those funds will be utilized in area lakes.
Fifteen area lakes were among the 42 projects awarded grants. The projects involve 16 counties in northern Indiana.
The grants will help control or manage aggressive non-native species, including Eurasian watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed and starry stonewort, that can take over and clog lakes. The grants can also provide economic benefits to lake communities by improving and increasing public access opportunities for those who fish or pleasure-boat.
The grants were awarded by DNR director Cameron F. Clark through the Lake and River Enhancement program in the DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife. The applications were submitted by local sponsors who share at least 20 percent of the total cost.
Lakes in Kosciusko County and the amount awarded are:
- Backwater Lake, $1,300
- Barbee Lakes Chain (Kuhn, Barbee, Little Barb, Irish, Sawmill, Banning and Sechrist lakes), $6,750
- Beaver Dam and Loon lakes, $2,030
- Center Lake, $16,600
- Chapman Lakes (Big Chapman and Little Chapman), $28,500
- Dewart Lake, $5,875
- Tippecanoe Lake Chain (Tippecanoe, James and Oswego lakes), $34,500
- Wawasee and Syracuse lakes, $18,500
- Webster Lake, $36,000
Lakes in neighboring counties receiving grants include:
Fulton and Pulaski counties
- Bruce Lake, $5,000
- Four Lakes area (Mill Pond, Kreighbaum, Cook and Holem lakes) $29,200
- Koontz Lake, $6,500
- Lake of the Woods, $12,400
- Simonton Lake, $1,500
- Sylvan Lake, $5,000
LARE grants are funded through the LARE fee paid by boat owners annually when they register their boats with the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. This user-funded program benefits boaters all over the state. The grants allow for the completion of projects that would be difficult for many local organizations to fund on their own.
“These LARE grants further our goals of improving aquatic habitat while enhancing recreational opportunities for fishing and boating,” said Mark Reiter, director of DNR Fish & Wildlife. “Addressing invasive plants in many of Indiana’s most popular public lakes should benefit many lake users during the summer boating season.”