Dane County Partners with City of Madison to Clean Up

June 20, 2017
Josh Wescott 608-266-9069
County Executive

Barge, Crew Touring the Shorelines Thru Summer to Remove Trash, Debris


Dane County is partnering with the City of Madison to continue its “blue waters barge” cleanup effort along the shorelines of Lake Mendota and Lake Monona, Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced today. The barge will pick up aquatic trash and debris from Madison residents' piers, stormwater outlets, and public beaches from now until the end of August.


The “blue waters barge” and its crew visit Lake Mendota and Lake Monona on alternative weeks throughout the summer to collect aquatic vegetation and other debris that has washed up on shore. 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.


In 2016, a total of 178 barge loads of lake trash and aquatic vegetation were removed from the lakes. 104 barge loads were removed from Lake Monona and 74 were removed from Lake Mendota.


Dane County’s joint effort with the City of Madison to clean up Lake Mendota and Lake Monona began in 2008. The partnership enables Dane County to provide the “blue waters barge” and a means for disposal and the City of Madison to cover barge crew costs and fuel. The city reimbursed Dane County $26,339.20 for its barge cleanup efforts last year.


To ensure timely barge pickup at lakefront properties, aquatic vegetation should be placed on residents’ piers by Monday at 7:00 a.m. on the designated pickup week.  The barge crew does not collect yard waste, brush or household waste. The pier pickup schedule for both lakes can be found at:



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