The LMCD was created in 1967 by state enabling legislation, which was a result of concerned citizens working for nearly a decade to improve Lake Minnetonka. The two primary general responsibilities included: 1) to regulate the use of the Lake, and 2) to develop a comprehensive program to eliminate pollution.
Red algae blooms caused by untreated regional sanitary sewage were resolved in the early 1970’s. Other activities have evolved subsequently. This includes: 1) the creation of the authorized dock use area in the early 1970’s (where docks and boats must be stored), 2) the establishment of Quiet Water Areas in the early 1970’s (minimum-wake speeds), 3) the adoption of boat density regulations in 1978 (applies to both licensed and unlicensed sites), 4) the management and prevention of aquatic invasive species, and 5) the licensing and permitting of a number of activities.
The LMCD has adopted regulations for the licensing and permitting of a number of activities on Lake Minnetonka. This includes: 1) Multiple Docks (approved, legal storage of five or more restricted watercraft), 2) District Mooring Areas (sailboat buoy fields), 3) Watercraft for Hire (charter boats), 4) Intoxicating Liquor, Wine, and Non-Intoxicating Malt Liquor License (for charter boats), and 5) Winter De-icing. The LMCD also has the authority to issue permits for special events, although this has been been delegated to the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Water Patrol.
All docks and boats on Lake Minnetonka must be contained within an area called the “authorized dock use area” (“DUA”). Each site on the Lake has a DUA that is defined by a specified length from the shoreline and side setbacks that must be maintained from the side property lines of the site extended into the Lake. See the “Rules and Regulations” section for further details on DUA requirements.
The number of restricted watercraft (including personal watercraft) allowed at a site is as follows:
In most cases, a permit is not needed. However, there are two cases where a permit is needed. First, if you have the shoreline to store five or more restricted watercraft, you need an annual multiple dock license from the LMCD. Second, if you would like to install a permanent dock, you need a permit from the LMCD. A seasonal dock is a dock that is constructed so that it may be removed on a seasonal basis (although this is not required). The most common example of a permanent dock is what you see at a number of the commercial marinas on the Lake.
The size and location of docks and the number of watercraft that can be stored at a Lot do not change when there is an easement over the Lot. However, the landowner and the easement holder must share the available dockage rights for that Lot. In most cases, however, adding boat storage for an easement holder decreases the total number of watercraft that can be stored at the Lot. Some Lots can be used to store four watercraft under an exception that applies only if there is a residence on the Lot and all watercraft at the Lot are owned by and registered to people who live in that residence. In these cases, storage of a watercraft by an easement holder would disqualify that Lot from taking advantage of this exception because the easement holder’s watercraft would not be owned by and registered to a person living on the lakeshore Lot.
No. It is unlawful for any person to sell food, beverages, supplies, or any other merchandise from any watercraft. However, food and beverages may be sold on a watercraft to passengers who leave the shore and return on the same watercraft (charter boats).
The LMCD Office is located on at 23505 Smithtown Road (Suite 120), Shorewood, MN 55331. This location is 0.5 miles northwest of Highway 7 on County Road 19 (Smithtown Road) and 3.7 miles south of the County Roads 15 and 19 intersection in Navarre.
Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.