How do we restore water quality in lakes, rivers and streams?
Legacy Amendment dollars appropriated to BWSR pay for on-the-ground projects like these:
A ravine in the City of Savage was sending sediment into the Credit River and Minnesota River ...
|... surface water runoff from city streets caused severe erosion, and an unsafe area for city residents.||A Legacy Amendment grant, and local dollars through the Scott Watershed Management Organization rebuilt and stabilized the ravine. The result is a savings of 50 tons of sediment per year, and improved safety. Read more about this project|
Loss of shoreline vegetation on Lake Freemont in Sherburne County was contributing to heavy algae blooms ...
|... erosion increases sediment and phosphorus in the lake, and destroys aquatic vegetation that is necessary for fish and wildlife habitat.||A Legacy Amendment grant and local dollars through the Sherburne SWCD stabilized the shoreline using bio-engineering. The project reduces phosphorus in the lake by 355 pounds per year and sediment by 400 tons per year, which will help restore water quality and habitat. Read more about this project|
These are just two examples of the many types of projects that are eligible for BWSR's Clean Water Fund Competitive Grant program. Summaries of projects funded through BWSR grants are available on our Clean Water Stories page.
BWSR also receives Legacy Amendment dollars for the Reinvest in Minnesota (RIM Reserve) program, a wetland restoration and sensitive area protection program.
We keep track of all the Clean Water, Land, and Legacy Amendment projects on our website so that you can stay in touch with accomplishments in your community, see how the money is being spent, and help generate ideas for future projects.
How citizens can take advantage of Legacy Amendment dollars available through BWSR
Is there a lake, river or stream in your area that you want to protect or restore?
Do you have land in agricultural production that is flood-prone or located near sources of drinking water?
Do you have a septic system that needs to be replaced?
LGUs have staff that will help determine the best solutions for specific water quality concerns in your area.Your LGU has information about projects that remedy these issues, and other information about dollars available for water quality and habitat projects. Many have citizen advisory committees that provide feedback and make recommendations on priorities for protecting and restoring water resources.
Use the interactive map to search by address or zip code to find conservation LGUs in your area:
Or see the following LGU directories for contact information:
- Local Water Managers Directory
- Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) Directory
- Watershed Districts Directory
- Metro Watershed Districts and Watershed Management Organizations (WMO) Directory
BWSR Legacy Amendment Fund Appropriations
BWSR has prepared a report that outlines the comprehensive strategy used to implement the Fiscal Year 2011 appropriation from the Clean Water Fund. This report meets the requirements of Minnesota Laws 2009, Chapter 172, Article 2, Section 6.
- Read the report (March 1, 2011)
- 11 x 17 handout summarizing BWSR Clean Water Fund appropriation (January 2011)
News Coverage of Clean Water Fund Projects
- Cold Spring Rain Gardens -- August 4 article in the St. Cloud Times about 33 rain gardens that have been installed by the Sauk River Watershed District through a Legacy Amendment grant.
- Shoreline Restoration Project on Stony Brook -- June 8, 2011 article in the Lake Country Echo and Pine River Journal features a demonstration shoreline restoration project by the Crow Wing Soil and Water Conservation District, partnering with the City of Lake Shore. This project will help protect the water quality and ecosystem of Stony Brook and demonstrate types of plants to use in a shoreline restoration. Funding for this project was through a grant from the Clean Water Legacy Amendment.
- Plymouth Creek Restoration Project Finished -- June 8, 2011 article by KSTP highlights a $950,000 project to improve water quality in Medicine Lake--the second largest lake in Hennepin County. Funding for the project came from Hennepin County, the Bassett Creek Watershed Restoration Project, and the Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources through the Clean Water Land and Legacy Amendment.
- A clean water legacy -- January 2011 article in the Winona Post about the Winona SWCD's work to upgrade several feedlots though a Clean Water Fund grant.
- Grant helps green Stillwater golf course -- August 2010 article at TheAmendment.org about a $62,000 grant from BWSR that has teamed up with a $5,000 cash match and $5,000 in-kind match from Stillwater Country Club, and $46,900 from Brown's Creek Watershed District to pay for a project to improve water quality in Brown’s Creek and the St. Croix River.
- SWCD gets $448k for conservation projects -- June 2010 article in the Sherburne County Citizen features the Sherburne Soil and Water Conservation District's Native Buffer Grant and Clean Water Fund Assistance Grant projects. Some of the conservation and restoration projects to be funded by these grants include native prairie restoration, shoreline stabilization, and rain garden installations.
- 7-way partnership tackles Diamond Lake wetland pollution -- May 2010 article in Southside Pride features the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District's project to install neighborhood infiltration activities, including 50 raingardens on residential properties, and pervious pavement systems in several locations, including a church and a city park.
- "New Approach to Halting River Erosion," -- March 20, 2010 article in the Mankato Free Press features a grant to the Blue Earth SWCD for a project along the Le Sueur River. The article includes an explanation of a Toe Wood-Sod Mat with Woody Debris project with a graphic illustration created by Mankato Free Press staff.
- "Crow Wing County SWCD Projects Grant," -- March 19, 2010 news segment Lakeland Public Television, and a Brainerd Dispatch article provide information about the Recharge! Restoring Natural Hydrology to Crow Wing County Urban Communities project.
- BWSR FY 2010 Competitive Grants News Release: Jan. 28, 2010 news release - BWSR approved more than $14 million in state grants for projects that will protect and restore Minnesota’s streams, rivers, lakes and groundwater. Funding the competitive grants includes $2 million from the state's general fund and $12 million from the Minnesota Clean Water Fund. Most of the funded projects also leverage local and federal dollars.
What are other organizations doing with Legacy Amendment dollars?
Protecting Minnesota’s waters is a joint effort of many individuals and organizations.
Check out the Clean Water Fund Interagency fact sheet for a brief summary of what BWSR and other state government agencies are doing to identify water quality problems and to implement solutions.
Here are links to other agencies that collaborate and partner on Minnesota’s water resource management activities under the Clean Water Fund:
- Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
- Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
- Minnesota Department of Agriculture
- Minnesota Department of Health
- Minnesota Public Facilities Authority
- Metropolitan Council
- University of Minnesota’s Water Resources Center
For more information about Legacy Amendment funding for all state agencies, please see the Omnibus Legacy Bill or the Legislative Coordinating Commission (LCC) website: Minnesota's Legacy, Watch the progress