On November 4, 2008 Minnesota voters approved the Clean Water, Land & Legacy Amendment to the constitution to:
The Amendment increases the sales and use tax by three-eighths of one percent on taxable sales, starting July 1, 2009, continuing through 2034.Those dollars are dedicated to four funds: Outdoor Heritage Fund, Clean Water Fund, Parks and Trails Fund, and Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.
To date the East Polk SWCD has received two grants through the Clean Water Fund, The Sand Hill River Watershed Accelerated Erosion Area BMP's, in the amount of $281,053, and Phase II Sand Hill River Watershed Accelerated Erosion Area BMP's, in the amount of $251,680. The projects are detailed below.
This project will assist in the installation of sediment basins in the focus area targeted as the upper reaches of the Sand Hill River Watershed. There is a need to target sensitive areas in the Sand Hill River Watershed that are vulnerable to severe soil loss. Sections of the Sand Hill River are listed as impaired by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency due to turbidity. Sediment basins hold back water in a timely period before entering a water course allowing sediment to settle reducing its impacts to water quality.
This project is a continuation of 2011 Clean Water Fund project to implement erosion control/sediment reduction practices in the Upper Sand Hill River Watershed. In cooperation with the Sand Hill River Watershed District, technical assistance is provided and conservation practices such as sediment basins are installed. Sediment basins are earth embankments designed to keep soil on the ground, not in rivers and streams. Sediment basins also act as temporary storage areas for rainwater. Each sediment basin will reduce on average 18 tons of sediment and 21 pounds of phosphorus per year from entering the Sand Hill River.