Rules and REgulations: Flood Control & Drainage

1. General Rules for the Disposal of Surface Water.

  • Every person shall use his land reasonably in disposing of surface water and may turn into a natural Drainage way all the surface water that would naturally drain there, but he may not burden a lower landowner with more water than reasonable under the circumstances.
  • Surface water shall not be artificially removed from the upper land to and across lower land without adequate provision being made on the lower land for its passage.
  • In order to reduce sediment transport, where feasible drainage shall be discharged through marsh lands, swamps, retention basins or other treatment facilities prior to release into the receiving bodies of public waters. Maximum utilization will be made of temporary storage areas or retention basins scattered throughout developing areas to maximize upstream storage and to reduce peak flows, erosion damage and drainage facility construction costs. Open drainage ditches shall make maximum use of vegetation to reduce channel erosion.
  • To control and alleviate erosion and the situation of the watercourses of the District:
    1. All watercourses therein shall be constructed with a side slope, as determined by proper engineering practice, so as to reasonably minimize land and soil erosion, giving due consideration to the intended capacity of the watercourse, its depth, width and elevation, and the character of the soils through which the drain passes.
    2. Water inlets, culvert openings and bridge approaches shall have adequate shoulder and bank protection in order to minimize land and soil erosion.
  • Any person who allows dirt to blow from his lands into a drainage is responsible for the removal of same.
  • Flood Control and Drainage (2, E. & F.) are interpreted so that ponds created solely by excavation are not reservoirs nor is the creation thereof reshaping of the surface topography. Therefore, the creation of ponds solely by excavation shall not require a watershed permit.

2. A permit must be obtained from the Watershed District prior to any work being commenced for the following:

  • Any landowner, occupant, contractor or equipment operator shall be responsible to ascertain that a permit has been obtained before undertaking any of the work hereinafter described requiring a permit from the Board of Managers.
  • No person or public corporation shall cut an artificial Drainage way across a subwatershed and thereby deliver water into another subwatershed without a permit from the Managers.
  • No person or public corporation shall undertake to construct or improve any Drainage way without a permit from the Board of Managers. A permit is required for any deepening or enlarging of existing drainage ways. Any existing Drainage way may be cleaned of debris, cattails, and blown in or washed in sediment without a permit; but any cleaning that involves removing clay or virgin soils or changing the alignment, depth, or cross-section of the Drainage way requires a permit.
  • No person or public corporation shall construct, alter, or remove any dike without a permit from the Board of Managers.
  • No person or public corporation shall undertake the construction, removal or abandonment of any reservoir for the impoundment of water without a permit from the Managers; nor shall any works be done which would alter the effectiveness of a reservoir without a permit from the Managers.
  • No person or public corporation shall undertake the practice of land forming, which is the reshaping of the surface topography but which does not include the common farming practice of land leveling, on a given tract of land without a permit from the Managers.
  • No Wetland types 3, 4, 5 and 8, as described by Circular 39, Wetlands of the United States, published by the United States Department of the Interior, shall be drained without a permit from the Managers.
  • Construction of new drainage ditches or improvements to existing public drainage ditches shall be administered by the Managers. Plans and specifications for such projects shall be filed with the Watershed District. Maintenance and repair of public drainage systems as permitted by Chapter 103E, Minnesota State Statutes, may be made by ditch authorities without a permit, provided the Board of Managers have been given copies of the plans and specifications for said ditch. The Board of Managers shall be notified of the proposed work prior to the commencement thereof.
  • No person or public corporation shall install or alter any drainage structure which will change the elevation and/or capacity of the structure without obtaining a permit from the Board of Managers.