2020 - Sediment Reduction in the Flute Reed River Watershed

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2020 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Clean Water Fund
Recipient Type
Local/Regional Government
In Progress
Start Date
February 2020
End Date
December 2022
Activity Type
Counties Affected
Project Details

An approved Total Maximum Daily Load study (TMDL) and other studies and plans for the Flute Reed River have led to sources with identified areas and methods for reducing sediment into the river. It has been identified that some of the largest sediment loading into the river takes place in the mid-section of the watershed with heavy clay soils and flashy hydrology from near channel sources. Other sources identified include overland flow through open lands management and forestry practices, beaver activity, tributaries, ditch maintenance, and improper culverts.
The proposed projects' purpose is to apply multiple strategies, identified within the TMDL, as a watershed approach within the granting period to improve water quality. Anticipated benefits include reduction of sediment loading into the system, cooler water temperatures, and community understanding of the watershed.
Midway up in the watershed, a tributary beginning to slump will be re-stabilized and restored. Moving down the watershed into the main river, the removal of a Hewitt Ramp identified by the MN DNR as a fish barrier and eroding the banks will be removed and the banks re-stabilized and re-vegetated. Working with willing landowners, areas will be re-vegetated with species that are not the first preference to beaver and that are adaptable for climate change. The main road system has a connected ditching system that leads to the river. There is approximately 3,000 linear feet identified in need of additional attention to reduce sediment into the river. Through re-vegetation and rock-checks as needed after final assessment, practices will be installed. All proposed projects are estimated to reduce sediment loading by 263 tons/year, a reduction estimated of 30% of sediment loading from throughout the watershed into the river. Continued outreach through neighborhood meetings will provide landowners with the opportunity to visit previous and current project sites expanding their watershed understanding.

Competitive Grant Making Body
Advisory Group Members and Qualifications
Conflict of Interest Disclosed
Conflict of Interest Contact

Marcey Westrick

Legal Citation / Subdivision
Minnesota Session Laws 2019, 1st Special Session, Chapter 2, Article 2, Section 7.
Appropriation Language

[Projects and Practices 2020] (b) $16,000,000 the first year and $16,000,000 the second year are for grants to local government units to protect and restore surface water and drinking water; to keep water on the land; to protect, enhance, and restore water quality in lakes, rivers, and streams; and to protect groundwater and drinking water, including feedlot water quality and subsurface sewage treatment system projects and stream bank, stream channel, shoreline restoration, and ravine stabilization projects. The projects must use practices demonstrated to be effective, be of long-lasting public benefit, include a match, and be consistent with total maximum daily load (TMDL) implementation plans, watershed restoration and protection strategies (WRAPS), or local water management plans or their equivalents. A portion of this money may be used to seek administrative efficiencies through shared resources by multiple local governmental units. Up to 20 percent of this appropriation is available for land-treatment projects and practices that benefit drinking water.

2020 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

One tributary bank stabilized (25.8 tons/yr); one hewitt ramp removed and bank re-stabilized and re-vegetated (11.4 tons/yr); Estimated 3,000 ft. of flow (188 tons/yr); riparian re-vegetation (37.8 tons/yr); 5 landowners engaged in projects.

Source of Additional Funds


Recipient Board Members
Members for Cook SWCD are: Dave Grosshuesch, David Berglund, Joan Farnam, John Twiest, Stan Tull
Project Manager
First Name
Last Name
Organization Name
Zip Code
Administered By
Administered by

520 Lafayette Road North
St. Paul, MN 55155

651- 296-3767