Statewide Technical Assistance

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2015 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$490,390
2014 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$442,904
2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$285,700
2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$279,500
2010 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$259,000
Fund Source
Clean Water Fund
Recipient
Minnesota Department of Agriculture
Recipient Type
State Government
Status
In Progress
Start Date
July 2009
End Date
June 2018
Activity Type
Demonstration/Pilot Project
Education/Outreach/Engagement
Technical Assistance
Counties Affected
Statewide
Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2013, Chapter 137, Article 2, Sec. 2
Appropriation Language

(d) $1,500,000 the first year and $1,500,000 the second year are for research, pilot projects, and technical assistance on proper implementation of best management practices and more precise information on nonpoint contributions to impaired waters. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2018.

2015 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$490,390
Number of full time equivalents funded
7.77
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)
  • Number of edge-of-field water quality monitoring stations installed and operational
  • Number of research or science groups that request and use data generated at research and demonstration sites (either to validate models, reference in TMDL studies or promote the adoption of conservation practices)
  • Number of field days, presentation and other educational events hosted each year and the number of contacts with farmers, crop advisors and co-op dealers
  • Number of local and regional partnerships in support of protecting and restoring surface water in Minnesota

 

Measurable Outcome(s)

The MDA conducts on-farm demonstrations and evaluations to provide accurate data on water quality effects of specific practices and help farmers understand and adopt best management practices (BMPs). On-farm work is conducted at 17 sites using 37 automated monitoring stations. The MDA works closely with 20 local government partners across the state. To date, over 50 field days, tours and educational events have been held to share results with interested farmers, conservation professionals and other stakeholders.The number of data requests for information from edge-of-field monitoring sites continues to increase. For example, the National Weather Service has requested edge-of-field data to validate / calibrate their Runoff Risk Advisory Service. Specifically, they are interested to know if runoff is actually occurring at times when their predictive model suggests the likelihood is high. Other data requests have come from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program, Water Resources Center (U of M) and others.For additional measurable outcomes see the section labeled "Related Projects" 

Description of Funds
Administrative costs will be reported at the end of the fiscal year.
Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2013, Chapter 137, Article 2, Sec. 2
Appropriation Language

(d) $1,500,000 the first year and $1,500,000 the second year are for research, pilot projects, and technical assistance on proper implementation of best management practices and more precise information on nonpoint contributions to impaired waters. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2018.

2014 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$442,904
Administration costs
$58,532
Number of full time equivalents funded
7.85
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Please refer to fiscal year 2015

Measurable Outcome(s)

Please refer to fiscal year 2015

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, Chapter 6, Article 2, Sec.3
Appropriation Language

M.L. 2011:(d) $775,000 the first year and $775,000 the second year are for research, pilot projects, and technical assistance on proper implementation of best management practices and more precise information on nonpoint contributions to impaired waters. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2016.

2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$285,700
Administration costs
$12,945
Number of full time equivalents funded
4.35
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Please refer to fiscal year 2015

Measurable Outcome(s)

Please refer to 2015

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, Chapter 6, Article 2, Sec.3
Appropriation Language

M.L. 2011:(d) $775,000 the first year and $775,000 the second year are for research, pilot projects, and technical assistance on proper implementation of best management practices and more precise information on nonpoint contributions to impaired waters. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2016.

2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$279,500
Administration costs
$10,515
Number of full time equivalents funded
3.45
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Please refer to fiscal year 2015

Measurable Outcome(s)

Please refer to fiscal year 2015

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2009, Chapter 172, Article 2, Sec. 2
Appropriation Language

M.L. 2009: (d) $695,000 the first year and $1,570,000 the second year are for research, pilot projects, and technical assistance related to ways agricultural practices contribute to restoring impaired waters and assist with the development of TMDL plans.

2010 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$259,000
Administration costs
$11,990
Number of full time equivalents funded
1 FTE (2010), 2.7 FTE (2011)
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Please refer to fiscal year 2015

Measurable Outcome(s)

Please refer to fiscal year 2015

Description of Funds
Administration costs for FY10 represent the sum of FY2010 and FY2011.
Project Overview

The MDA's technical assistance helps ensure that current and accurate scientific information is made available and used to address water quality concerns in agricultural areas of Minnesota. This funding has been used to evaluate the effectiveness of conservation practices, share information from research and demonstration sites and enhance outreach and education to the agricultural community and local government partners.

The MDA technical assistance staff support the Impaired Waters Process in Minnesota. Staff attend meetings and provide input for Watershed Protection and Restoration Strategies (WRAPS) and other planning documents. The MDA provides advice about the implementation of best management practices and supports on-farm evaluations. The MDA is also represented on multiple interagency teams to ensure consistency and coordination on research and demonstrations across state agencies. Through outreach efforts, the MDA ensures that agricultural issues are represented during scientific discussions that focus on water quality.

Evaluating the Effectiveness of Agricultural BMPs: In many areas of the state, the MDA uses on-farm evaluations to help farmers compare different management practices and use the results to update knowledge and inform future management decisions. The MDA uses on-farm, edge-of-field monitoring to assess sediment and nutrient loss at the field scale and to evaluate the effectiveness of conservation practices. The MDA works with many partners including universities, crop consultants, soil and water districts, farmers, and other state agencies.

Technology Transfer: The MDA works with many partners to share information about research and emerging technologies. The MDA provides in-field technical assistance, project coordination and technical advice. The MDA convenes technical advisory committees to share information about projects and gather input from subject matter experts. The MDA also meets regularly and provides technical advice to project partners including commodity groups, local SWCDs, non-profits and other state agencies. The MDA works directly with farmers and local government units to disseminate information and to ensure that scientific information gets in the hands of the end user.

Outreach and Education: The MDA works with many partners to ensure that Clean Water Fund information is accurate and easily accessible. Brochures, fact sheets, videos, web pages, field days, presentations and meetings are used to deliver information to individuals and organizations. The MDA works with a diverse group of stakeholders including farmers, legislators, state agencies, local governments, academics, non-profits, environmental groups and community based groups. The MDA's communication efforts support local partnerships and foster greater cooperation.

 

Project Details

Technical assistance activities include:

  1. Root River Field to Stream Partnership
  2. Clay County Drainage Demonstration Site
  3. Discovery Farms Minnesota
  4. Nutrient Management Initiative
  5. Red River Valley Drainage Water Managment Project
  6. Promoting precision conservation to local governments

 

Project Manager
First Name
Margaret
Last Name
Wagner
Organization Name
Minnesota Department of Agriculture
Street Address
625 Robert Street North
City
St. Paul
State
Minnesota
Zip Code
55155
Phone
(651) 201-6488
Email
Margaret.Wagner@state.mn.us