Seal of Dane County County of Dane
County Executive's Office

County Executive, Mayor Debut New City-County “Blue Waters Barge”

June 06, 2008
Josh Wescott, (608) 267-8823 (County Executive) Joel Plant, (608) 266-4611 (Mayor)
County Executive

Madison - Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk and Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz Friday unveiled the newest joint effort by the city and county to help clean up Madison lakes. The new City-County “blue waters barge” will begin working the shorelines of Madison lakes starting next week. The “blue waters barge” will be used on Lakes Monona and Mendota on alternating weeks to pick up garbage from both private piers and public beaches and parks. Similar to curbside garbage and recycling pick-up, the barge will spend the entire summer going around the lakes and working shoreline areas in the city of Madison. “Residents of Dane County and the City of Madison have a real love affair with our lakes. That’s why we’re partnering up on this new effort to keep our waters blue and our shorelines clean,” Falk said. Because it will be in the water all summer long, the “blue waters barge” expands on the successful work of the annual Dane County “Take a Stake in the Lakes” clean-up project. That two-week effort resulted in the removal of 13 tons of garbage from Madison area lakes in 2007. "Because of this cooperative effort between Dane County and the City of Madison, our residents should notice that our shorelines are somewhat cleaner," said Cieslewicz. "This effort will make the fabulous summer in Dane County even a little better than it usually is." Refuse and weeds collected by the barge will be loaded onto elevators the county uses to unload lake weed harvesters and hauled off in county trucks to either a compost site or the landfill. Falk included $80,000 for the barge and its hydraulic hoist in 2008 Dane County budget. Cieslewicz put $20,000 in the city's 2008 budget for the crew that will be used to go around and pick up the trash and weeds. The “blue waters barge” will work Monday-Friday through Labor Day. # # # # #