View All Posts

Jun 03

Drainage Update 6/3/2019

Posted on June 3, 2019 at 9:35 PM by Ryan Hiniker

Drainage update 6/3/2019


Upcoming Drainage Hearings or Meetings:

  • No upcoming major hearings or meetings.

Project Updates


  • CD48 (Cambria Twp.)  Another two inches of rain on Memorial Day definitely didn’t help efforts for this improvement project.  Despite wet, muddy, and slow-going conditions, crews did what they could to get tile installed last week.  
  • JD09 (Le Ray Twp.)  Some additional seeding has been done; other than that nothing new to report for this improvement project. 
  • JD34 (Le Ray Twp.)  To my knowledge the general contractor is working with one of the inspectors from our engineering firm to get final check-list items completed. 
  • JD51 Waseca (Danville Twp.)  New tile outlets are slowly being installed along portions of the open ditch where they are needed.  We will have a seeding contractor coming in to hydro-seed in the next couple days.  Once the seeding is done and outlet tiles repaired, this repair should be completed for the Blue Earth County side.                                                                                                                                                                                       

Drainage Minutes:

No interesting stories to share this week.  Just a quick reminder to anyone who has a repair that needs to be fixed whether it’s county tile or county open ditch, we (drainage staff) are working with multiple contractors trying to get things repaired as quickly as possible.  I know that many people are stressed out with the never-ending winter and now the never-ending spring rains.  We are doing everything in our power to make sure all repairs are done in as timely manner as possible, but they must be completed by qualified contractors.

I currently have 142 active repairs open in Blue Earth County.  That number doesn’t include the major improvement projects going on.  We ask to inspect every single repair before we find a contractor to do the work.  I usually make the in-field inspections and work with 7-8 contractors throughout the year to make sure that the repairs are not only getting done, but are getting done properly.  We do not pay for any unauthorized repairs made to a county drainage system.  We will not pay for repairs to a contractor that hasn’t been preauthorized to do work for Blue Earth County drainage.  Part of that approval is proof of insurance certification.  We require proof of insurance certification before any sort of work is done on a county drainage system, whether it is repairs or mowing or spraying. All contractors need to have an updated copy on file with county drainage staff.

To all folks that are reading this and are waiting for a repair to be made to your property or rental land, thank you for your patience.  This spring has been a very challenging year for everyone that works outdoors.  Like I have previously mentioned, we are working with multiple contractors to get things repaired as quickly as possible.  I will continue to work as hard as I can to make sure repairs will continue to be done.  Even with multiple contractors working for us, we are still two or three weeks out with work.  So, if you know of a county system that needs a repair, please don’t wait to report it.

As if the wet weather isn’t bad enough, it’s insect season - just in-case you haven’t noticed.  The gnats are bad enough, but wood ticks are really coming out now.  Please be sure to check yourself and pets after being out in wood tick habitat.  I was listening to a story about a newly discovered virus from ticks that at this point has no cure.  Be careful out there folks. Get outdoors and enjoy our beautiful state, before it freezes up again, but be safe.  


Recent Drainage Inspections – week of May 27 – May 31:

  • CD50 (Lincoln Twp.)  It’s been a very trying time for repairing a sink hole along County Road 32, just south and west of Lake Crystal.  Between very difficult soils to work with and very wet conditions, I’m proud to announce that the new tile is installed and the road should be fixed back up and opened hopefully soon.  The old concrete tile line under the road collapsed and was replaced with new heavy-duty plastic pipe.  New pipe installed in photo below.cd50 installed pipe
  • CD35 (Mapleton Twp.)  Spot cleaning of the open ditch has been done.  The open ditch is deteriorating rapidly, due mostly to almost non-stop wet conditions and extreme winters with spring floodings.  All these things are a recipe for disaster for an impaired open ditch.  
  • JD51 Was (Danville Twp.)  Our major cleaning and light repair of this open ditch portion of this system is nearing an end.  New tile outlets are being installed where needed and the seeding of disturbed grass areas will be done this week, weather permitting.
  • CD27 (Lincoln Twp.)  A sink hole started forming in the acceleration lane near the Poet Ethanol plant, just west of Lake Crystal.  A repair will need to be made quickly and carefully with the volume of traffic along Minnesota Highway 60.
  • JD36 (Butternut Valley Twp.)  Report of a possible blocked tile and ponding water.  
  • JD33 (McPherson Twp.)  Sink hole causing water to back up in neighboring field.
  • JD22 (LeRay Twp.)  Issues with severe erosion gully washing a field crossing.  Major repairs will need to be made to stabilize the crossing for safety.

We are seeing a fairly large number of tile repairs coming in this time of year.  The unfortunate thing is we are still trying to work through our repair list from last year, 2018.  Please report issues you see on our public drainage systems, whether it’s a tile system or an open ditch system.  The repairs are usually fixed in the order they are received, so please don’t wait to let us know about issues you observe on public drainage systems, as the list grows daily.

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