Lake St. Clair and the surrounding land are becoming cleaner and more boater and fisher friendly, but more can be done to address illicit drain and sewer issues, officials said Wednesday.

At the seventh annual State of Lake St. Clair address, Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel, Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Candice Miller and others touted the lake and other efforts to plant trees, restore shorelines and increase the visibility of the recreational areas.

“Water quality, that’s the No. 1 thing,” said Hackel, who added that former U.S. Rep. Miller has helped address issues with Lake St. Clair. “The other is water access. Face it, we’re kind of land locked with homes and marinas out on the lakefront. How do we make it a destination location?”

A prime example is New Baltimore, which has been “transformed into a destination town so people want to come there because they make it accessible for others,” he said.

The recent efforts by the Detroit Zoo to build a freshwater nature center in Macomb County, Lake St. Clair is a growing attraction for the public, Hackel said.

“Once you touch it, feel it, you feel ownership, too, about those various issues of cleanliness, attractions and obviously creating opportunities for people to enjoy,” he said.