DNR to sell prime land to major donor to Scott Walker

Wait….what’s this? A major donor to Gov. Scott Walker’s campaign now stands to benefit? I’m shocked!

Elizabeth Uihlein, a major donor to Gov. Scott Walker, has reached an agreement with the Department of Natural Resources to buy 1.75 acres of prime lakefront property in Vilas County — a deal that gives her direct lake access to another property she now owns.

The agreement calls for the DNR to sell Uihlein 765 feet of frontage on Rest Lake in the Town of Manitowish Waters for $275,000. She currently owns an adjacent 11-unit condominium complex without lake access.

Uihlein and her husband, Richard, have donated nearly $3 million to Walker in recent years.

The businesswoman is a significant property owner in Manitowish Waters, is active in local affairs and is noted for her philanthropy, including paying for much of the cost of a pavilion in the community’s Rest Lake Park. A town official said that project will cost more than $1 million.

But also she has faced criticism for some of her activities and currently is under orders from Vilas County to replant trees at her condo complex after a worker she hired clear-cut foliage this summer on a portion of the property closest to the DNR land.


Related Articles

11 thoughts on “DNR to sell prime land to major donor to Scott Walker

  1. Yeah, sell more, got best rpice. too much owned by state and feds. Put back on tax rolls.

  2. I am with WCD. Sell more government property. I don’t think this is a scandal unless there is more info forthcoming. But a pretty good smear attempt by the MJS.

  3. Clearly this transaction will financially benefit or increase the value of the Uihleins’ investment in the adjoining property. And isn’t this a quid pro quo or a political donation resulting in favored treatment and/or monetary payback !

    It is ironic or timely that I recently talked to a DNR official to terminate a small public hunting easement, less than five acres, adjoining my property and others be terminated since five new residences, including mine, had been built surrounding the public easement which was granted many, many years ago. In addition, the town road , formerly used only by occasional farm traffic road was well within shooting distance bordering one side for the current greatly increased commuter and truck traffic. In addition, I cited past instances of trespassing on and firing into my property endangering me and members of my family.

    I was told by the DNR official to refer my request and problem to my local state elected officials. Unfortunately, since I have not recently made any “nearly $three million” donation to Walker or any one else, I got his message that a taxpayer’s safety and peace of mind can only be addressed thru a “quid pro quo.”

    It seemed to me that this was not a political issue, but rather a safety issue which was under the jurisdiction of the DNR.

    “Oh the humanity!”

  4. “The People’s Beach”

    Reaffirming the public’s right to the beach could be the first step in a more just and sustainable coastal environmental policy. The argument used to defeat the Open Beaches bill — that it would depress real estate values — is precisely the reason we need to reintroduce an updated version of this legislation now. Without the ability of property owners to wall off and claim the beach as their own, coastal real estate values would slowly decline, and the pressure to develop would dissipate (or at least become more ecologically sensitive).


    1. John. at one time, I recall that ALL lakes in Wisconsin were required to have a public access. A long time ago the property owners surrounding Lake Chenequa tried to close the lake to the the public, but failed.

      1. Sounds right.

        “Wisconsin’s Waters Belong to Everyone”

        Wisconsin lakes and rivers are public resources, owned in common by all Wisconsin citizens under the state’s Public Trust Doctrine. Based on the state constitution, this doctrine has been further defined by case law and statute. It declares that all navigable waters are “common highways and forever free”, and held in trust by the Department of Natural Resources.”


  5. There really is no price justification for selling off shore frontage that already belongs to the pubic, which the condo owners still have better than equal access to, because of the proximity of the complex. No doubt it will become posted as private, off limits to the general public and what’s left of a contiguous natural buffer and environmental corridor around the lake will be mowed, trimmed and cut and “improved.”

    1. There is tons of justification. we have too much land that we do not need and should be put back on the tax rolls. The legislature decreed that so that we can buy land that makes sense to own.

      1. Are you related to the Uihlein’s?

        Who decided that that particular property would go to them?

        The land belonged to the citizens of the State of Wisconsin. Did anyone else get a chance to bid on it? Who set the price?

    2. nq,the question to be answered is: do you, I, and the public have access to Lake Rest?

      If so, where?

      It does not necessarily have to be on Walker’s “quid” for Uihilens’s quo.”

      Going over a waterfall, walking through a swamp, or flying in on a float plane does not count.

Comments are closed.