By Jessica Mathews /

A meeting tomorrow night will focus on improvements and other efforts over the past year on the Huron River Chain of Lakes.

The Huron River Chain of Lakes consists of nine lakes in southern Livingston County and Washtenaw County. Those lakes are Big Portage, Little Portage, Baseline, Zukey, Strawberry, Whitewood, Gallagher, Ore, and Tamarack Lake. Ore Lake is not included in the current SAD project.

The Fall 2021 Update & Educational Meeting is scheduled for Thursday at the Hamburg Township Hall from 7 pm to 9pm. Environmental Supervisor Lauren Koloski with the Washtenaw County Water Resources Public Works Division tells WHMI it’s their annual education and update meeting, which is typically held in the fall. Their department and Progressive AE will be covering aquatic invasive and native plant management, herbicide treatment, maintaining biodiversity, various resources and recreational enjoyment within the ongoing Chain of Lakes Improvement Project.

Koloski says Progressive AE is their consulting company that manages the special assessment district for the lakes and will review the 2021 treatment season, as well as ways residents can assist in their efforts to promote a healthy ecosystem so everyone can continue to enjoy the Chain of Lakes. She says the SAD was originally created to last for five years and the project is up for renewal in 2022 so they’ll ultimately be looking for petitions from the township for renewal.

The meeting will review efforts over the last year and treatments that were done, including what worked and how they’ll approach next year with changing treatment options. Koloski tells WHMI they’ll also gather some feedback from residents about how to best plan for the next year.

Koloski noted that the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy’s Aquatic Nuisance Control Division issues permits for herbicide treatments on lakes in Michigan, and last year, they heavily restricted copper usage on the permits so they are continuing to expect that to be a hurdle for the project but are trying to work around it to maintain recreational usage for the lakes. She noted that copper controls a lot of things and it can be broad non-selective control or very selective but mostly those they use copper for are the invasive Starry Stonewort and algae.

Koloski says their target audience for the meeting is anyone and everyone who lives on or loves the Chain of Lakes. She noted that resident involvement is important and they look forward to gathering feedback.

Thursday’s meeting will feature both in-person and virtual options. Those attending the event in person will be required to wear a mask and masks will be available.

There’s also an online interest survey for residents to give feedback about what they would like to see or what’s most important to them.

For those who can’t view or attend Thursday’s meeting, Koloski says it will be recorded and posted online so they can view it at a later date. Any questions can be emailed to Details and links are available in the attached event flyer.