City Council votes 5-2 to keep ordinance, continuing ban of motor boats on Teal Lake

NEGAUNEE — The public came out in droves Thursday night to voice their opinions on what the City of Negaunee should do regarding motorized boats on Teal Lake.

The Negaunee City Council meeting was filled to the brim as locals gathered for agenda item seven; a public hearing to repeal a city ordinance that bans the use of motorized boats on Teal Lake. Thursday night was the second reading and residents had mixed comments about the issue.

“The economic impact outlined by Mr. Kantola is preposterous-150 boats per day based on a 12 hour day means 12.5 boats would need to be launched every hour,” said John Becker, a citizen for keeping the ordinance. “That’s one boat every 4.8 minutes and that’s just putting them in the water. We might as well latch them altogether and just walk from one to the next. Or, better yet, pave the whole thing. Not to mention there are only like six parking spots and maybe two vacant lots for sale.”

“We allow snowmobiles, ice fishermen, four-wheelers, not to mention garbage that is left from those ice fishermen,” said Rhonda Gravedoni, a citizen for repealing the ordinance. “I’ve witnessed, I have pictures of the garbage that melts on the ice and sinks to the bottom. We cannot pick and chose what type of pollution, debris or noise, that we are going to enforce.”

Other issues residents brought up included noise and water pollution, introduction of foreign species into the ecosystem, economic stimulus, possible death and preserving the natural beauty of the area. After two and half hours of public comment and an hour discussion between council members, the council voted 5-2 to keep the ordinance in place, continuing the ban of motor boats on Teal Lake.