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Sep 22

Fall Clean Up

Posted on September 22, 2020 at 11:07 AM by Ryan Hiniker

Drainage update 9/22/2020


Upcoming Drainage Hearings or Meetings:

Blue Earth County has recently started hosting board meetings and some drainage hearings virtually.  Blue Earth County staff has been using a combination of live-streaming video and conference call-in options.  Notices sent out for drainage hearings will include all necessary information for our constituents to attend these hearings virtually via internet or through the call-in option.                                                              

Fall Clean Up:

Well, despite what we want and think, fall 2020 is coming very soon.  Now is the time of year that many people are busy pulling out their lake equipment.  Whether it might be a dock, a boat lift, jet ski lift or floating dock, no matter what it might be, if it was in the water this season now is the time to be checking this equipment over for any invasive species. 

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is asking all fellow Minnesotans to look over their lake equipment before putting it away for storage.  Fall is a good time to be looking for aquatic hitchhikers like Zebra Mussels, which have been on the rise in many new lakes in the last few years.  Lake users and lake property owners are the first line of defense against the spread of invasive species from invading your favorite lakes.

How many of us know that there are Minnesota laws on docks and lifts?  Test your knowledge, did you know that any docks and lifts removed from one lake must remain out of the water for a minimum of 21 days before being put into another lake?  Anyone that chooses to move a lift or dock from one shoreline area to another area, whether it be for storage or for repair, permitting may be needed, to help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species.

Are you wondering how you can learn more and do your part in slowing the spread of invasive species into our lakes and waterbodies, click on the link below.                                                                                                                                                      

Project Updates:  

  • JD34 (LeRay Twp.)  No change from last week. 
  • CD05 (Medo and Danville Twps.)  Crews should start demobilizing off-site this week.  Not much work is left other than touching up a few areas that sloughed off after we had them cleaned once before.
  • JD09 North / South (LeRay Twp.)  No changes from last week.  We are awaiting final As-Builts to review and hopefully close these both out this year.
  • CD48 (Cambria Twp.)  Few “after harvest” items remain, mostly grading small areas and cutting down in-takes, in a few areas.
  • CD26 (McPherson Twp.) Trees and most brush have been removed.  We are awaiting the contractor to start with the cleaning of the open ditch, which is hopefully going to be next week.
  • JTD83 (McPherson Twp.)  Our tree contractor is just about finished with removing all trees and brush.  Stump grinding is about the only thing left as far as trees.  We had one of our contractors install a new tile line near the beginning of the open ditch, which is branch 7.  Our new water quality in-takes, or ASI’s, will start being installed this week.  Our primary contractor started yesterday with the cleaning and reshaping of the main open ditch.  The contractor is to clean from the outlet to the inlet, or from bottom to top, if that’s an easier way of describing it.  Near our outlet it joins into another drainage system, CD26, the flow near this outlet is currently very steep.  We plan on installing two concrete control weirs to help control and slow the flows down.  By slowing the flow down and controlling the water better, we are hoping to prevent further damage to the township road right-of-way.                                                                                                                                              

Recent Drainage Inspections:

  • JD03 (Danville Twp.)  We had a contractor do some minor cleaning of the buffer and open ditch to a small portion of area.  The area of cleaning was south of the local township road.  We hope to straighten and clean the rest of JD03 next year.
  • CD05 (Danville Twp.) Doing a few walk throughs of areas needing some final touch-ups.  Repairs should be finished up this week or early next week. 
  • CD95 and CD96 (Mapleton & Danville Twp.)  Trees, brush and weeds have been sprayed on these two systems recently.
  • JD48 (Butternut Valley Twp.)  We have a contractor making some minor repairs to multiple areas along the open ditch.  Some of these repairs include slough repairs, in-take repairs and buffer violation removals, which include fence posts and rock piles.  Fence posts and fencing is not allowed in our 103E buffer areas.  A fence post to mark an in-take is allowed, but not fencing for other purposes.  Rocks and rock piles are not allowed in the buffer area either.  Landowners may be held liable for damage to contractor’s equipment if items of violation are found in the acquired buffer area.  The biggest concern is the mowing and spraying contractor hitting posts and rocks and other debris that is not allowed in the buffer area.
  • CD26 (McPherson Twp.)  Monitoring cleaning and repair efforts to the portions of open ditch.
  • JTD83 (McPherson Twp.)  Monitoring cleaning and repairs to the open ditch area.  Photos below showing our new branch 7 being 7 2br 7

Do you have questions or topics about drainage that you would like to here more about? If you would like me to incorporate those concerns or topics in one of my future blogs, please feel free to email me at the listed email address below. 

We have multiple contractors making repairs across the county currently.  Please report repair issues to our drainage staff as soon as you notice them, as this will expedite the time in getting those repairs made.

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