MOORHEAD (AP) - Minnesota lakeshore residents are changing tactics in the fight against aquatic invasive species - they're taxing themselves.

Lake property owners have increasingly started forming lake improvement districts, which have the authority to levy property taxes. The most common reason is to help pay to fight the growing problem of invasive species.

The Legislature authorized lake improvement districts in the 1970s.  The law saw little use before 2005, averaging less than one new district annually in the land of 10,000 lakes. But in the past few years, according to the Department of Natural Resources, the average has climbed to more than three a year.

While there are several ways to create a lake improvement district, a majority of lake residents generally must petition their county board.

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