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Posted on April 7, 2017 at 3:48 PM by Ryan Hiniker
Drainage update 4/7/2017
Upcoming Drainage Hearings or Meetings:
No upcoming drainage hearings or meetings
I attended the first Minnesota Viewers meeting of the year at Morton this week. The topic of this meeting was road authorities and how to assess the benefits and damages for ditch systems. It was very interesting to listen to how the viewers are taking different approaches to make these benefits and costs more up-to-date.
Many of the drainage systems, speaking for our county, have old Benefits Listings. As we are ordering new ROB’s (Redetermination of Benefits), these issues of road authority benefits and other issues are being discussed and remedied. Many times when we do a new ROB, we find out that some landowners have taken acres and tile out of the watershed they are listed in, or new ones have come in. Those are all issues that need to be addressed as this has a big effect on how many acres and dollars are paying into the system for maintenance, repairs and improvements. As always if there are questions or concerns with watershed issues or benefits please call and discuss it with us at the drainage office.
Additional Alternative Practices That Offer Flexibility:
I read an interesting article this week about how BWSR (Board of Water and Soil Resources) is rolling out flexible alternative practice ideas to meet water quality improvement standards. They highlighted six examples in this article, but the truth is there are a large number of things that would probably qualify instead of just a grassed buffer along a ditch.
SWCD’s and the NRCS have been working with many landowners in preparation for the pending deadline this fall for public water systems to have their buffer established. BWSR knows that it’s not a one-size-fits-all type situation, so they are offering up ideas to alternative water quality practices that may custom fit a landowner's operation. Since the buffer law came about, there have been a lot of ideas on how to get this done and how to make it fit everywhere. The six ideas that BWSR published came from a work group made up of farmers, SWCD’s and other agricultural groups. They are as follows:
This is just a sample list of things one could do on their land, we're not saying this works for all situations. This is more to spur the idea that other things can be done to meet water quality goals without just a plain grass stip.
With 40 percent of the state’s waters listed as polluted or impaired, this clean water initiative has purpose. Legislative actions are still going on with this buffer law, so we will have to stay tuned to see what comes out of these proposed possible changes. Contacting your local SWCD office is a great place to start with questions and concerns. I know I personally try to stay in touch with them and they have always been very helpful with answering my questions or concerns.
To read this article yourself or to check out other things with water quality, check out the BWSR website.
Recent Drainage Inspections – week of April 3 – April 7:
Upcoming Drainage Inspections:
Please call with issues you observe on our public drainage system, as there is a lot of open ditch and tile in our county and only two of us in the drainage department. We will do our absolute best to service your issues and concerns as we receive them.
Please remember: We require that all repairs to a county drainage system (tile or open ditch) be authorized by one us in the drainage office, before any repairs are made.
Drainage Management Specialist