BRRWD Sets 2020 Tax Levies

The Board of Managers, Buffalo-Red River Watershed District (BRRWD), held their regular meeting and 2020 Annual Budget Hearing (8:00 PM) on Monday, August 26, 2019, at 7:00 PM, in Barnesville. The Board approved the 2020 Administrative levy, which is capped by statute at $250,000, plus an annual administrative fee to be assessed to projects, based on a project’s account expenditures ($100,000) for a total Administrative levy of $350,000. The 2020 Insurance Levy was set at $22,000. The Board also set a General Levy, to be taxed in accordance with the Minnesota Statutes Annotated (M.S.A.) 103D.905, Subd. 3, ad valorem tax for a general fund not to exceed 0.007298% of all taxable market value to pay the costs attributable to the basic water management features of projects initiated by petition of a political subdivision within the Watershed District. In 2020, these funds will be used for a variety of projects/programs, including the Red River Basin Commission ($25,000), River Keepers ($55,000), development and implementation of total daily maximum load analysis for water quality, log jam removal, flood insurance studies, and flood damage reduction/natural resource enhancement projects. In addition, the Board also placed a second Special Levy, associated with M.S.A. 103D.905, Subd. 3, to raise funding for Project No. 79, Wolverton Creek Restoration ($500,000), according to the BRRWD’s commitment to contribute up to $2 million to the project. The total 2020 General Levy ($1,486,862) is up slightly from 2018 because of market values.

The Board also set the following 2020 project/ditch system levies:

Clay County

Ditch No. 3 – $25,000
Ditch No. 11 – $50,000
Ditch No. 16 – $35,000
Ditch No. 17 – $10,000
Ditch No. 20 – $10,000
Ditch No. 22 – $10,000
Ditch No. 23 – $20,000
Ditch No. 28 – $15,000
Ditch No. 31 – $5,000
Ditch No. 40 – $25,000
Ditch No. 55 – $25,000

Becker County

Ditch No. 5 – $10,000
Ditch No. 9 – $30,000
Ditch No. 15 – $15,000

Wilkin County

Ditch No. 4 – $20,000
Ditch No. 5A – $20,000
Ditch No. 6A – $30,000
Ditch No. 12 – $10,000
Ditch No. 13 – $20,000
Ditch No. 13-Lateral – $50,000
Ditch No. 15 – $10,000
Ditch No. 22 – $50,000
Ditch No. 23 – $20,000
Ditch No. 26 – $15,000
Ditch No. 28 – $10,000
Ditch No. 31 – $25,000
Ditch No. 40 – $15,000
Ditch No. 41 – $70,000
Ditch No. 42 – $10,000
Ditch No. 43 – $20,000
Ditch No. 44 – $30,000
Wilkin/Otter Tail J.D. No. 2 – $20,000

Projects/Ditch Systems

No. 32, Hawley Diversion – $5,000
No. 39, Georgetown Levee – $25,000
No. 46, Turtle Lake Outlet – $25,000
No. 49, Oakport Flood Mitigation – $100,000
No. 50, Cromwell Township Outlet – $10,000
No. 54, Whisky Creek – $20,000
No. 56, Manston Slough – $50,000
No. 64, LaBelle/Boyer – $10,000
No. 79, Wolverton Creek Restoration – $99,407 

Other business included:

  • Reviewed the BRRWD’s financial status. Cash on hand is $2,331,106.59. Income since the 8/12/19 meeting totals $410,838.09, including $405,705.80 from Clay County for their 1st half ditch/project 2019 tax proceeds, $1,305.00 from Ohnstad Twitchell for costs related to the Diversion Authority’s Data Practices Act request, $2,327.05 from landowner payments for the Section 27, Manston Township, waterway repair, and $1,500.24 from the Red River Watershed Management Board for Mediation Project Team expenses. The Board also approved payment of the bills, totaling $269,366.60. 

  • Introduced RaeAnn Berg, the new Administrative Assistant, who started work on 8/19/19. 

  • Discussed downstream landowners’ concerns about the potential effects of tile drainage on a farmstead and field approach from a proposed tiling project in Section 17, Nordick Township, Wilkin County (Permit No. 19-086, Richard Yaggie). The Board approved the permit and assured the landowners the permit includes conditions restricting tile operation during high water events.

  • Approved permits to: Terry Kohler for the installation of water and sediment control basins with surface intakes and an underground outlet in the SW¼SW¼, Section 9, Audubon Township, Becker County; Kevin Lunde for the installation of water and sediment control basins with surface intakes and an underground outlet in the SE¼NE¼, Section 18, Lake Park Township, and the SW¼SW¼, Section 33, Cuba Township, Becker County; Richard Steffl for the installation of water and sediment control basins with surface intakes and an underground outlet in the NE¼NE¼, Section 2, Callaway Township, Becker County; Joel Crabtree for the installation of water and sediment control basins with surface intakes and an underground outlet in the NW¼NW¼, Section 30, Lake Park Township, Becker County; Charles Wentz for the installation of water and sediment control basins with surface intakes and an underground outlet in the NW¼SW¼, Section 27, Cuba Township, Becker County; Curtis Nelson for the installation of water and sediment control basins with surface intakes and an underground outlet in the NW¼SW¼, Section 11, Lake Park Township, Becker County; Evelo, Inc. to install random tile in the SW¼, Section 14, and SE¼, Section 15, Trondhjem Township, Otter Tail County, outletting to an existing 12″ dia. concrete tile line flowing southwest, eventually to Otter Tail County Ditch (C.D.) No. 56, subject to our standard tiling disclaimer and County review to be sure the land is assessed to C.D. No. 56; Beau Jacobson to install pattern tiling in the SW¼ and W½SE¼, Section 35, Flowing Township, Clay County, with mains on the north and west quarterlines, outletting via a lift station in the northwest corner to an existing private ditch, eventually draining to C.D. No. 39 to which the property is assessed, subject to our standard tiling disclaimer; Jared Nordick to move an existing approach with a new 24″ dia. x 60′ long culvert in the NW¼, Section 22, Meadows Township, Wilkin County, to the west approximately 100′ so that the neighbors can share the approach; and Andrew Beyer to clean an existing ditch to the original grade in the SW¼, Section 5, Nordick Township, Wilkin County, which, according to BRRWD Rules, doesn’t actually require a permit. 

  • Authorized a repair investigation for a damaged crossing/concrete culvert on Project No. 61, Clay C.D. No. 11-North. 

  • Approved Pay Request No. 1 in the amount of $130,081.60 for Drewes Construction, Inc. for their work on Project No. 78, Clay/Wilkin Judicial Ditch (J.D.) No. 1-Outlet Repair. 

  • Approved Pay Request No. 2 in the amount of $76,451.25 for States Borders Construction, Inc. for their work on Wilkin-Otter Tail J.D. No. 2. 

  • Approved the 2018 Annual Report, which will be filed with the Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources and posted on the BRRWD’s Website. 

  • Approved a motion to contribute up to $41,400 in technical assistance, as a 25% match for a Clean Water Fund (CWF) grant application to be used to address sedimentation in 30 priority sites within the Whiskey Creek watershed in partnership with the Wilkin Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). CWF funds are based on a 25%/75% cost share. The BRRWD commitment could be less if the NRCS also agrees to contribute Environmental Quality Incentives Program funds for the project. 

  • Authorized Erik Jones, BRRWD Engineer, Houston Engineering, Inc., to submit a National Water Quality Incentive (NWQI) program application to help fund a project to restore approximately 13 miles of channel along Whiskey Creek in partnership with the NRCS and the Wilkin SWCD. The implementation of NWQI funding is dependent upon landowner interest and participation.

The Board of Managers, BRRWD, will hold their next regular meeting on Monday, September 9, 2019, at 7:00 PM in the BRRWD Office, located at 1303 4th AVE NE, Barnesville, MN. All meetings are open to the public. For more information about the BRRWD, please visit our website at www.brrwd.org.