The Schoolcraft Township board of trustees voted on February 9 to increase the maximum assessment for weed control in Barton Lake to $308.11 per benefit unit for each of the last two years (2016-2017) of the current five-year assessment period. The assessment amount was based on estimates provided by water resource specialist Progressive AE, which has been managing Barton Lake weed concerns since 2008. A benefit unit is each parcel owned by an individual.
The increase was authorized in order to provide additional funding to combat a newly discovered invasive species in the lake, starry stonewort, as well as other invasive plants and zebra mussels. The special assessment district was established in 2008 primarily to control Eurasian milfoil, but since that time lakes across Michigan and the Midwest, including Barton Lake, have experienced additional invasive species that continue to pose a threat to lake environments.