This project will identify and prioritize opportunities to implement a multipurpose drainage management plan that will provide adequate drainage capacity, reduce peak flows and flooding and reduce erosion and sediment loading, improving water quality to the West Branch Rum River.
Northern white cedar wetland plant communities provide unique ecological, economic, and wetland functions, including high value timber, long-term carbon storage, winter refuge for deer and other wildlife, wildlife habitat, and thermal buffering for brook trout streams. However, these plant communities have been declining in Minnesota for decades mostly as a result of development impacts. The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources is using this appropriation to continue efforts aimed at improving the quantity and quality of white cedar wetland plant communities in Minnesota.
The Project and Outreach Coordinator will facilitate efforts within the watershed to provide landowner support and assistance in identifying areas in need of conservation plans and best management practices. The coordinator would use the Watershed Protection and Restoration Strategy Report and county water plans to target and prioritize outreach and education to maximize water quality benefits. This will greatly multiply the number of educated landowners in the watershed and increase the number of projects implemented.
The proposed work will be the fifth septic inventory effort conducted by Todd County and will include eight lakes, 431 parcels, and 277 established addresses. Three of the lakes - Cedar, Long Higgens, and Pauley are located in the Sauk River Watershed District's Sauk Lake Management Unit which is a high priority for improvement. These are the last three lakes of any size to be completed in the Sauk River Watershed portion of Todd County. Nitrogen and phosphorus levels are an issue through the watershed and this management unit in particular.
Todd County Septic Inspectors will research septic systems on 313 parcels that are located in the "highly vulnerable" portion of the City of Long Prairie's Drinking Water Supply Management Area. Each parcel's tanks and soil drain fields will be inspected for septic system compliance. Todd County will follow up with landowners found to have noncompliant systems in an effort to protect Long Prairie''s drinking water supply.
The Bird’s Eye Lake AMA acquisition has been completed. A portion of the land cost had come from this
appropriation, the 2016 Aquatic Habitat OHF appropriation, and by gifts matched with RIM Critical Habitat. This
tract consists of 52 acres, of which 5 acres are being reported on under this appropriation, as to not double count