Reflecting the South Washington Watershed District mission “To manage water and related resources of the SWWD in cooperation with our citizens and communities” SWWD expects Cities and Townships to be active partners in addressing issues identified in the SWWD Watershed Management Plan.
Several Watershed District programs are specifically required under MN Rule 8410 and the District’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permit. While the District takes seriously its general roles and responsibilities it tailors those programs to first address priority issues identified through a public process. The following programs reflect that commitment and are intended to establish the programmatic framework to facilitate a community response to issues.
Coordinated Capital Improvement Program (CCIP)
The District administers a Coordinated Capital Improvement Program (CCIP) to provide financial assistance to local land use and public works authorities for water quality improvement projects.
The SWWD implements an annual education program aimed at improving the general knowledge of watershed residents of SWWD projects programs and their benefits.
Watershed Management Plan
Watershed districts are local units of government that work to solve and prevent water-related problems. The Minnesota Legislature authorized the creation of watershed districts in 1955, through the Watershed Act, with the idea that managing water on a watershed basis, rather than on the basis of political boundaries, made sense, since water does not stop flowing at city or county boundaries. They also have many similarities, including the requirement to conduct their activities according to an approved watershed management plan.Watershed plans must address a wide variety of topics. In 1992, the Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) developed rules (Minnesota Rules Chapter 8410) for plan content. Generally, watershed plans must assess issues within a watershed, set forth goals and policies, include an implementation plan, and incorporate public input during the planning process.
The District’s Watershed Management Plan (WMP) provides guidance for the SWWD to manage the water and natural resources of the watershed. The SWWD plan inventories resources, assesses resource quality, and establishes regulatory controls or physical improvements to maintain environmental quality of the watershed. The South Washington Watershed District has updated its watershed management plan. A watershed management plan lays out a framework for how a Watershed District will manage its resources, and how the District will interact with other agencies such as cities or the county.