Skip to content Skip to main navigation Skip to footer

Latest News

Landscaping Guides for Living in the Dunes

Our town of Michiana Shores lies within the Tolleston Shoreline region of southern Lake Michigan. If you’re interested in learning more about how the shoreline of Lake Michigan has shifted throughout the centuries, start here with this short overview from IU/Indiana Geological and Water Survey about the formation of Lake Michigan. The oak savannahs that formed behind the sand dunes in this part of the state present a unique ecosystem of sandy, acidic soil, that doesn’t support the type of landscaping that one might find in typical America lawns in the Midwest. The folks at Save the Dunes have put together some handy landscaping guides for those of us living within the dunes of Southern Lake Michigan – check them out to help you in making plans for your Michiana Shores landscapes that fit with the native flora and fauna around us.

How to apply for a short-term rental permit

STEPS TO A SHORT TERM RENTAL PERMIT*

*Note: STR permit Moratorium goes into effect 10/9/222

STEP 1 – Read and review the zoning variance details in the STR Ordinance of the Town Code, which includes all the requirements you will need in order to apply for a BZA hearing to gain a variance to allow for short-term rental business in a single-family residential neighborhood.  Once you have an approved zoning variance, then you can proceed to next step.

STEP 2 – You must obtain a Merchant Certificate through the Indiana Secretary of State’s office and Indiana Department of Revenue to ensure that you are collecting and submitting sales and innkeepers’ tax to the State.

STEP 3 – Have a thorough inspection of your home completed by a licensed home inspector. Be sure that all the items mentioned in Ordinance 2020-02 are addressed in the inspection. 

STEP 4 – The completed BZA Application to Request a Special Use and all required attachments should be sent to the Building Commissioner at michianashorescodeenforcement@gmail.com. The filing fee (check made out to, “Town of Michiana Shores”), must be mailed or delivered to Town Hall at 601 El Portal Road, Michiana Shores, IN 46360. The Building Commissioner will contact you to verify that the application packet is complete and to let you know when your Request will be heard by the BZA. You must be present to answer questions from the BZA.

STEP 5If the BZA approves the Special Use request, the written decision along with the attachments must be submitted to the Building Commissioner with a completed STR Permit Application (found in the STR ordinance) and a filing fee of $150.  The Building Commissioner will contact you to let you know when your application will be heard by the Town Council.  You must be present to answer questions from the Town Council..

STEP 6 – If the Town Council approves the permit you will be issued a signed window placard that must be displayed in a street facing window and fully visible from the roadway, designating the property as an Approved Short-Term rental establishment.

STEP 7 – Ensure that all guests follow the Short-Term rental requirements to avoid future citations at the property.  Any Short-Term rental receiving 3 citations will have their permit revoked for 12 months.  Any illegal activity at the Short-Term rental will result in immediate permit revocation.

STEP 8Permit renewals are needed on an annual basis and consist of filing a new application (no fee is required) to update any changes to property.  Note, no new inspection is required unless the property has undergone substantial changes. 

Parking rules to be mindful of

There is NO PARKING allowed on the roads of Michiana Shores. Due to our narrow streets, cars must be parked completely off of the roadways for safety purposes. Fire trucks and other emergency vehicles have difficulty navigating the narrow roads. This means that cars must be completely off the roadway – 2 wheels on the roadway is not sufficient. This is an enforced ordinance.

Dogs rules on and off the beaches

  • When out walking your dog, it must be controlled by a leash (not to exceed 8 feet).
  • Owner of person in control of any domestic animal must remove all animal waste or feces.

Rules for Dogs on Michiana Michigan Beaches

  • No person shall permit any domestic animal whether under restraint or not, on any public beach in Michiana Michigan between the hours of 11:00 am to 6:00 pm(EST) from May 1st thru October 1st.
  • All dogs must be controlled by a leash (not to exceed ten feet).
  • Owner or person in control of any domestic animal must remove all animal waste or feces or other public property.

Beach bonfire rules – Michiana beaches

  • If you are going to have a bonfire on the beach at Stop 37 or any Michiana beach, you must acquire a permit from the Village of Michiana MI.

No person shall kindle or maintain any bonfire on the public beaches in the Village of Michiana without having first obtained a written burning permit from the Village Chief of Police or Village Clerk. Such permit shall be issued by the Michiana Police Department, upon payment of a permit fee established by the Village Council, on forms provided by the Michiana Police Department. Such permit shall state the date of issuance, the length of time (not to exceed three days hereafter) during which it shall be in effect, and the place where such burning is to take effect. Even though a burning permit is obtained aforesaid, no open fire shall be kindled or maintained unless the same shall be located more than 50 feet from a building and shall be constantly attended until completely extinguished. The Village Chief of Police or any officer of the Michiana Police Department shall have the authority to order extinguishment of any fire whenever in his/her judgment the same shall constitute a hazard (because of high winds or other conditions) or a nuisance.

Contact information for the the Michiana Village Hall can be found here.

Fireworks rules & regulations

Michiana Shores

  • It is YOUR responsibility to become aware of what fireworks (IC 22-11-14-1) are permitted. All times listed here are Central Time.
  • The approved fireworks are permitted ONLY from June 29 to July 3 between 5 pm and (2) hours after sunset.
  • The approved fireworks are permitted ONLY on July 4 from 10 am til midnight.
  • The approved fireworks are permitted ONLY from July 5 to July 9 between 5 pm and (2) hours after sunset.
  • ANY VIOLATION of this ordinance shall be subject to a $100 fine. A second occurrence will be fined $250. A fine of $2500 will be imposed for a third occurrence. 
  • All fines to be paid to the Town Clerk as an Ordinance Violation

Michiana, Michigan

  • Fireworks Rules in Michiana per Code chapter 159
    • Fireworks are legal only on the following days and times:
    • December 31st 11:00 AM ET through January 1st 1:00 AM ET
    • Following dates run 11:00 AM ET – 11:45 PM ET:
      • The Saturday and Sunday immediately preceding Memorial Day
      • June 29th through July 4th
      • July 5th, IF the date is a Friday or Saturday
      • The Saturday and Sunday immediately preceding Labor Day
    • Fines are $1,000 per occurrence.
    • Fireworks are NOT allowed on any public property like the beaches.

Building or remodeling first steps!

Before picking up a hammer and nails for ANY remodeling or improvement projects, or removing trees from an undeveloped lot, you must contact the Building Commissioner:

  • Deb Chubb
  • 219-210-9956
  • michianashorescodeenforcement@gmail.com

Deb will advise you as to what steps you must follow for ANY type of improvement or building projects including but not limited to: new home builds or projects, remodeling, additions, sheds, roofing, decks, plumbing, electrical, gas, windows, fences, pools, playhouses, driveway updates, removal of trees, etc. She’ll also advise you completing your building permit, for which you will need to start by completing this application.

Note: Those with properties in the Floodway and/or the Floodplain may have additional requirements.

Golf cart rules for Michiana Shores

Last Updated: June 2021

(New for 2021: if you plan to operate your golf cart in Long Beach, you will need to register and abide by their laws as well. Read more on the Long Beach website.)

Michiana Shores Ordinance 2012-17 (November 13, 2012)

1). A driver of any golf cart must be a licensed driver under Indiana law and must have such license on his or her person at all times during operation of said golf cart on any road in the Town of Michiana Shores. No unlicensed drivers. No children driving.

2). All golf carts must have bodily injury and property damage insurance on said golf cart and have proof of such insurance in the golf cart at all times during operation of the golf cart. 

3). All golf carts must display an amber flashing light when headlamps are necessary for other motor vehicles. This must be visible from no less than 500 feet from the rear of the golf cart. In addition, if the golf cart is operated at times when headlamps are necessary, the golf cart must be equipped with both headlights and taillights that are in working order. In addition, all golf carts must be equipped with a rearview mirror.

4). All operators of golf carts within the Town of Michiana Shores must abide by all applicable State of Indiana traffic laws during operation, including provisions of the Slow Moving Vehicle Statute {IC9.21.9}. A Low Speed Vehicle is not a golf cart.  It looks like a golf cart, but it has a license plate. 

5). Any person who wishes to operate a golf cart in the Town of Michiana Shores must annually register the particular cart to be operated with the Clerk Treasurer’s office and pay the registration fee ($50) and display the receipt/sticker at all times while operating the golf cart.

6). While in operation, no golf cart shall carry no more passengers than such golf carts are equipped to carry and all passengers must be seated at all times.

7). Violations will be subject to fines.