WHITE BEAR LAKE — How long a dock and how many slips Commercial Bay operators are allowed is still an issue with which the Lake Conservation District is grappling. 

Three marina permit applications remain unapproved and tabled. 

Tally’s Dockside needs to provide newly engineered drawings with its two properties now combined as one. Owners Keith and Jan Dehnert purchased the Lake Avenue building and frontage that houses Acqua in December, giving them another 30 feet of shoreline. Acqua’s lease, by the way, is good through 2033. 

Docks of White Bear needs an updated compliance letter from the city. Discussion continues there as to total slips allowed. Owner Brian McGoldrick asked for 260 slips, per his Department of Natural Resources permit. Last year he had 225 slips. The district’s Lake Utilization Committee (LUC) recommended 250 at last month’s meeting.  

The LUC asked the third major operator, the city, to provide a measurement from its Boatworks Commons dock to the ordinary high water mark. Committee Chair Mark Ganz said they are hoping for uniformity on dock length in the bay. The city also used an old application form with less expensive slip fees, so was told to resubmit its application. The current fee is $75 per boat. 

Also noted in the discussion is a need to be consistent with the number of docks per foot of shoreline, per ordinance. The city has 3.25 slips per foot, Ganz said, which he feels should be the recommended number. 

Ganz did not favor McGoldrick’s request for 260 slips because the docks would extend beyond 300 feet, which is the regulated ADUA (authorized dock usage area) limit now that water levels are back. 

McGoldrick pointed out that based on linear frontage, he could have 400 slips.

“We have 78% of the Marina Triangle District,” he maintained. “Our expectation is fairness, and it’s not fair I’m the only one in the bay not granted our DNR permit.” He added that he’s OK with a number based on linear frontage but didn’t believe the district would enforce that rule because both the city and Tally’s would lose some slips. 

LUC member Luke Michaud told McGoldrick the board wasn’t picking on him. “We just need to decide on a number for everyone,” he said. 

The tabled permits were not discussed at the March 16 conservation district meeting. Noncontentious dock applications were approved, however, for Wildwood Beach Club, Forest Heights Association, Snyder Bay, Alicia Heights and the VFW. All requests were unchanged from 2020. An application from Russ Becker of Dellwood was incomplete and tabled.


Also approved at the March 16 meeting: 

• An agreement with the Ramsey County Sheriff’s Department for summer lake patrol. The department will provide 120 supplemental hours at $41 per hour for a total of $4,290 paid by the district. The expense was in the 2021 budget. 

• Agreed to provide a phone number on the first and last buoy of the waterski slalom course. It will likely be the conservation district phone number for anyone who wishes to lodge a complaint. The buoys are supposed to be moved twice a month.

• Discussed boating etiquette and ways to get the word out on how to be respectful, particularly when it comes to noise. Apparently, most conservation officers carry a device to measure decibel level, which district counsel recalled is 90 decibels according to ordinance.

• Mike Parenteau noted that he applied for and got a $4,500 DNR grant for treatment of Eurasian watermilfoil. 

• There is a new face on the Lake Conservation District board of directors. Meredith Walburg has replaced Marty Rathmanner as Dellwood’s representative. She will take over social media responsibilities. 

Officers remain the same as last year: Bryan DeSmet will serve as chair; Mark Ganz as vice chair and Diane Longville, secretary-treasurer.

— Debra Neutkens  

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