Frequently Asked Questions

Is a sticker required for my non-motorized kayak?

Yes, a Fox Waterway sticker is required for any boat out on the water that is being used as a mode of transportation with the exception of paddle boards. The state did away with the water usage stamp for non-motorized.

How much are the stickers?

Refer to the sticker fee schedule available at our office or by clicking here

Where can I pick-up the FWA sticker?

You can pick the sticker up in our office at 45 S Pistakee Lake Rd or one of our satellite locations which are listed here

Why is the sticker more if bought from a satellite location?

The satellite locations charge a convenience fee they keep on top of the price of the sticker and any additional processing fees.

My state sticker is expired or I need a new state sticker.

Unfortunately, we do not handle state registrations at our office. The DNR no longer sends out reminders when stickers are expiring. The information can be found on the decal on the side of the vessel and the year that is listed is the year on September 30th that it’ll expire. To renew the sticker, you can go online to the DNR’s website ( or you can call 1-866-867-3542.

I want to redo my pier.

The Army Corps and the DNR are the ones who permit the changes made to existing piers or the permitting for a new pier. More information can be found here

Where can I launch?

We do not have public launching at our location but the Chain O Lakes State Park in Spring Grove off Wilmot road has a free public launch. Otherwise, you have to call around to marinas and see if they offer launching and what the fee would be. Our app has more information on locations of marinas otherwise please see the Boating Lake County website.

The weeds are taking over my channel!

We do not handle the removal of weeds or algae in the system. More information can be found on our website or you can contact the DNR at 847-608-3100.

How many employees work at the waterway full-time?

14 employees. (1) Executive Director, (3) Office Staff, (1) Field Superintendent, and (9) Field Staff. During the summer months the number varies.

When do buoys get placed and removed?

The buoys start being placed May 1st and are completed by Memorial Day. The buoys are removed between October 1st and October 15th.

How does the waterway decide where to place buoys?

We are responsible for Pistakee Lake up to the Wisconsin state line. We place them based on “safety” considerations and to mark the channels. Per our master ordinance book and IDNR administrative code, south of Pistakee they are installed and maintained by the IDNR located at the Stratton Lock and Dam.

Where does the FWA get it's income?

We receive our monies primarily from user fee sticker sales.

  • We also receive, to a much lesser degree, some monies from grants for our clean-up activities and safety items.
  • We receive revenue from the sale of dredged material as topsoil.
  • We do not receive any monies from property taxes since we have no authority to impose property taxes.

What is the status of the Trinski's Island project?

Currently, the Trinski Island project is under review with the Army Corps of Engineers’ regulatory branch awaiting approval for a permit.

Where can I find out what the current FWA projects are?

The dredging schedule is located here

When and where are the board meetings?

Generally they are the 4th Wednesday of each month, except during the holiday season, at our office, 45 S. Pistakee Lake Road, Fox Lake. See the meeting schedule on our website under “Meeting Agendas”

Who can we talk to about our area being dredged?

Come to a public board meeting to address your concerns. A FWA dredging application can be downloaded and printed from our website or pick one up in our office.

What are the hours of the Stratton Lock and Dam?

May 1st– Sept 30th: 8AM- Midnight

October 1st– 31st: 8AM- 8PM

Closed November 1st through April 30th