Supplemental Clean Water Fund Request; Nitrate News: Clean Water Council Update

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Minnesota Clean Water Council

Supplemental Clean Water Fund Requests for FY24-25


The November budget forecast and revenue estimate showed an additional $18,056,000 in the Clean Water available for the remainder of the FY24-25 biennium. At its January 22nd meeting, the Clean Water Council made a supplemental request for these funds to be sent to the House and Senate Legacy Finance Committees. These are recommendations, and the Legislature would have to appropriate the funds.

These recommendations meet several timely needs:

  • The public health response to private wells in southeast Minnesota with high nitrate levels.
  • The long-term effort to reduce nitrate in southeast Minnesota groundwater and surface waters from agriculture.
  • The need to increase statewide monitoring and consumption advice for PFAS compounds in fish.
  • Reducing the backlog of easement funding requests in priority watersheds in north central Minnesota that protect the drinking water supply of numerous rural municipalities and the Twin Cities, among other benefits.
  • Continued support of water quality efforts by tribal governments.
  • Supporting improved water quality in the Lake Superior Basin that will attract matching federal funding from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.
  • Studying the emerging issue of contaminated stormwater ponds.

More Details

Upcoming Meetings & Project Updates

Minnesota Clean Water Council

Upcoming Meetings

NOTE: Seven positions on the Clean Water Council are up for appointment this year by the Governor. See more information at the Secretary of State's office web site.

Full Council: The next meeting is Monday, February 26th (topics: TBD). The packet from the January 22nd meeting (topics: strategic planning; supplemental budget request for the Clean Water Fund) has been posted at our web site.

Policy Committee: The next meeting is Friday, February 23rd. (Topics TBD.) The packet from the January 26th meeting (topics: Update on Nutrient Reduction Strategy, private wells) has been posted at our web site

Budget & Outcomes Committee: The next meeting is Friday, February 2nd. (Topics: Restoration Evaluations, Clean Water Fund Performance Report.) The packet from the January 5th meeting (topic: latest BWSR Clean Water Fund competitive grants and recommendations for supplemental Clean Water Fund requests) has been posted.

Updates on Projects Supported by the Clean Water Fund

Watershed district grant to improve water quality of Centerville Lake | Rice Creek Watershed District (Anoka County) receives a CWF grant from BWSR.

February BWSR Snapshots: The Board of Water and Soil Resources has issued its latest set of project Snapshots

  • Maple Grove’s popular Fish Lake poised to drop ‘impaired’ status: Fish Lake,
    a 232-acre lake bordered by a regional park with a swimming beach and public water access, achieved the phosphorus reductions necessary to be considered for delisting in 2017, after the first dose of a two-part alum treatment.
  • Water storage among benefits of Murray County wetland restoration: In Murray County, two drained wetlands totaling nearly 160 acres were restored, yielding water storage, water quality and habitat benefits. 

Creative Engagement for Water Protection in Little Falls: The Source Water Protection Collaborative recently wrapped up a create engagement pilot project, which commissioned an artist to engage the residents of Little Falls on source water protection through artmaking and community events. Su Legatt is a Minnesota-based artist, educator, and community organizer. Su held events and conversations with community leaders, educators, artists, and other residents to develop artwork that explored the community’s relationship to and understanding of its source water, and how important groundwater is to the community at large. Also see a YouTube video on the project.

Water quality project along Crailsheim Road may advance this year: A CWF grant will "build a water quality improvement pond on a stream flowing through the Worthington School District's Crailsheim property. This project will reduce nutrient and sediment pollution to Lake Okabena."

Mower maintains septic progress. County sees 92 new SSTS projects in… | by Cedar River Watershed District | Jan, 2024 | Medium: Mower County continues reducing imminent threats to human health from septic systems.

Other Relevant Water News

State says it will provide clean drinking water in southeast Minnesota, but offers no new curbs on farm pollution ( A summary of the state's response to a petition to EPA about nitrate in private wells. (Paywall.) Also see Minnesota nitrates plan relegates ag to 'long term' strategies | Agri-Pulse Communications, Inc. (paywall) and Minnesotans work together to address environmental challenges (

Cancer in the corn belt sparks actions to fight farm chemical contamination - The New Lede: Minnesota legislators propose fertilizer fee to support nitrate mitigation.

How rethinking design could reduce the need for road salt | MPR News: The re-design of paved surfaces could reduce chloride pollution.

Official Release of Continuous Living Cover Report: Friends of the Mississippi River announces the release of “Putting Down Roots: Analyzing the economic and environmental benefits of continuous living cover for Minnesota’s farmers, water and climate.”

Hold the road salt: 67 Minnesota waterways now ‘impaired’ due to chloride – Twin Cities: Chloride is noted as a component of the draft biennial Impaired Waters List.

The Future of Southern Minnesota Lakes 2024 Conference: ISG will host the second annual Future of Southern Minnesota Lakes Conference in Mankato on Friday evening, April 12 and Saturday, April 13. The conference will focus on empowering lake residents and stakeholders with knowledge and tools to manage their lakes.

Good news and bad news: 30-year report details Upper Mississippi water quality | MPR News: "A recent report from the Upper Mississippi River Basin Association looks at how water quality in the river changed over 30 years — from 1989 through 2018. There’s some good news and some bad news. Glenn Skuta is the watershed division director at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. He’s also a member of the association’s Water Quality Executive Committee. He joined MPR News Host Cathy Wurzer to explain the details of the report." The report is here. Also see Is Water Quality Improving in the Mississippi River? - MWMO