Forming and Managing a Lake Association

What is a Lake Association? 

In New York, the phrase "lake association" can mean many different things.  There are large, incorporated associations such as the Lake George Association and small associations like the Butterfield Lake Cottage Owners Association.  What is common to all these groups is a desire to bond people together who share the use of a lake. 

Forming a Lake Association 

There are many good guides to forming lake associations that have been developed in other states, and we won't "reinvent the wheel" on this page.

NH Department of Environmental Services:  Give Your Lake a Voice:  Create a Lake Association-

Minnesota Shoreland Management Resource Guide:  Organizing a Lake Association-

Washington State Department of Ecology:  How to Form a Lake Association -

Wisconsin Lakes:  Starting a Lake Group -

 If you can find a copy of this now out-of-print book, it is a very good reference:

Flock, G., J. Taggart, and H. Olem.  1991.  Organizing Lake Users:  A Practical Guide.  Terrene Institute, Washington, DC. 

Model By-Laws

A nice model from Wisconsin:

And some from NY:

Lake Bonaparte Conservation Club -

East Shore Schroon Lake Association -

Melody Lake Association -

Three Lakes Council -

You can find more by going to "About NYSFOLA Members" (under the Membership tab on the home page) and linking directly to member associations' web pages. 

Incorporating and Insuring a Lake Association 

Many, but not all, New York lake associations have incorporated with 501(c)3 not-for-profit status  You may want to hire an attorney to guide you through the legal steps of the process.

We now refer you to Appendix D of "Diet for a Small Lake:  The Expanded Guide to New York State Lake and Watershed Management 2nd Edition" for more information on this topic:






Lake News MAR 12th

Regional HAB Summits Set

Harmful Algal Bloom Summit Information 

The last two HAB Summit Public sessions are coming up.  If you missed the first two, you can watch them here:    The remaining two will also be live streamed and recorded.  

North Country HAB Summit

Tuesday, March 20 from 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Best Western Ticonderoga

260 Burgoyne Road

Ticonderoga, NY 12883

Western New York
Monday, March 26 from 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
R. Thomas Flynn Campus Center, SUNY Monroe Community College, the Forum

1000 East Henrietta Road

Rochester, New York 14623 
Free parking in campus lots N and M

At these summits, nation-leading experts will work with local steering committees to begin development of tailored action plans to address the causes of algal blooms in the twelve priority waterbodies across the state. The action plans developed for each waterbody will be used to guide the development and implementation of priority projects, including new monitoring and treatment technologies. The action plans will be complete by the end of May and the lessons learned through these action plans will be applied to other impacted waterbodies.


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News from U.S. EPA APR 22nd

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