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Jul 31

Meeting with a Purpose

Posted on July 31, 2017 at 5:58 PM by Ryan Hiniker

Drainage update 7/31/2017


Upcoming Drainage Hearings or Meetings:


No upcoming meetings are scheduled as of this time.



Project Updates:


·    CD56 (Garden City Twp.)  Forsberg Drainage crews continued to work on the ditch cleaning.  The ditch bottom cleaning has proved to be challenging in certain areas where the soils are almost like liquid sand.  The other part of the crew has been very busy clearing the heavy brush away from the open ditch bank.  They are using an excavator with a special attachment that grinds up the trees and brush.  We will come back next year and use special herbicides to control the regrowth from these trees and shrubs.  See picture below.clearing and grubbing


25 by 25 Water Quality Town Hall Meetings:


The 25% by 2025 Water Quality Town Hall agenda is out.  I was reading through this lengthy, but very well thought out, agenda.  The meeting will be in Mankato August 16.


The agenda covers some very key subjects and gives good examples of what things are of local concern.  There are also examples of what some local communities are doing or will be doing to improve water quality.


The agenda shares four key topics: Drinking Water, Infrastructure, Swimming, and Fishing.  Each individual topic has its “pro’s and con’s” of what we are currently doing in southern Minnesota for water quality.  All four categories are very important, but drinking water and infrastructure are the two “heavy hitters” as far as costs to individual communities.

The infrastructure piece is going to be a huge concern, especially for all the small communities with very small populations, in terms of trying to afford to pay for these water quality improvements.  They give example in the flyer of what St. Peter had to do to improve their rising nitrate levels in their drinking water.  They installed a very interesting reverse osmosis system at a very sizable cost to the St. Peter community.


Swimming and fishing topics are very important to many of us who are outdoorsy people.  I know my family enjoys being on the lake whether we are swimming, boating or fishing.  Many of our local lakes are listed as not meeting standards for swimming and fishing.  They highlight erosion, road and storm water contaminants, and invasive species, as major contributors to our current poor water quality situations.


They go on to highlight four crucial things for water quality progress in Minnesota.

1.    Water conservation

2.    Green infrastructure

3.    Farming practices (protecting waters)

4.    Being proactive on good water quality (cheaper to fix now than later)

I just wanted to highlight some of the topics that will be discussed when the workshop comes to Mankato on August 16.  Today is the first of the ten meetings, with the first meeting being held in Rochester.  The meetings, I imagine, will be well attended at all locations.  I know that I will personally try to make the Mankato meeting to have a firsthand experience of what the State is proposing for water quality. 

The Mankato meeting is being held at Minnesota State University.  Location of the meeting is at the Centennial Student Union, 620 South Road, August 16, from 6:30-8:30. 
For more information on this meeting please click here.



Recent Drainage Inspections – week of July 24 – July 28:


·    CD91 (Sterling Twp.)  Crews dug up a couple areas so we could get a crew in to televise the old county tile.  We have had ongoing issues with wet areas along the tile line.  Televising is often the cheapest and most effective way to figure out what is truly wrong with a tile system.


·    JD38 (Shelby Twp.)  Checked in on the newly installed outlet structure.


·    CD28 (Lincoln Twp.)  Checked in on some final cleanup of the two main construction site staging areas.  These two sites were where much of the new pipe, rock and other supplies were stored for construction use.  The final cleanup is needed to get things regraded and seeded.




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.


We require that all repairs to a county drainage system (tile or open ditch) be authorized by one us in the drainage office, either Craig or myself, before any repairs are made.





Ryan Hiniker

Drainage Management Specialist