Smith, others get help with erosion projects

On Tuesday, the Lyon County Board approved allocation of Buffer Enforcement Funds for three storm sewer projects. Among them is one undertaken by Selmer Smith of Norland Township.

The three retention projects are:

—Selmer Smith in Nordland Township for a dam at an estimated cost of $94,069 with allocation of buffer funds at $15,388. Smith says the dam was needed to offset downstream erosion.

The project is five miles south and two miles west of Minneota. Smith will provide a 25 percent match to help fund the project but also received SWCD (Soil and Watershed District) financial help for the project of $3,000 to reduce his cost to $20,51.

“This is a large project,” said Planning and Zoning Director Jon Biren. “We’re excited about this project near the Yellow Medicine River,” he added.

“On behalf of Selmer Smith, I appreciate the Lyon County Soil and Water District Board for this request. It will be a very beneficial project for the Yellow Medicine River and its watershed,” Biren said.

—Greg Taylor in Sodus Township for a silt pond at an estimated cost of $15,300. Buffer funds to be allocated are $11,475. The landowner will provide a 25 percent match on the project. This is a dry dam proposal to capture silt from being deposited in existing flood retention ponds.

—Charles Bjorklund for dam repair at an estimated cost of $20,746. Allocation of buffer funds will be at $3,890. This project is about one mile east of Tracy in Monroe Township. This project is a dam restoration stemming from damages during a storm last summer. The dam was plugged by cornstalks and forced floodwaters over the emergency spillway and the dam itself. The proposed project all prevent this from happening again.

The landowner will provide a 25 percent match on the project.

Biren said this is, “A beneficial project for the Cottonwood River and its watershed.”

•Approved the use of buffer funds to purchase a drill/buffer seeder to aid in the establishment of buffer strips. Many landowners wish to seed small areas into buffers. The Lyon County Soil and Water Conservation District would like to establish a program in which a seeder could be provided to landowners to use on limited bases. Guidelines will be established for use of the equipment and a policy on the seeding program will be developed.

The SWCD Board of Supervisors will get quotes for the drill. The estimated cost is $14,000.

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