Wells & Water Quality
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Greater Zumbro River Watershed Management Plan                  Zumbro River Watershed

In 2018, the Zumbro River watershed was awarded a planning grant by the MN Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) for the One Watershed, One Plan (1W1P) program.  The goal of 1W1P is to align local water planning on major watershed boundaries with state strategies towards prioritized, targeted, and measurable implementation plans.

The planning area for the Zumbro River 1W1P also includes the Mississippi River Lake Pepin (MRLP) Watershed in Goodhue and Wabasha Counties for a combined total drainage area of 1,058,967 acres. This Partnership which includes the counties and soil and water conservation districts (SWCDs) of Rice, Goodhue, Wabasha, Dodge, and Olmsted, along with the Bear Valley Watershed District and the City of Rochester, have entered into a Memorandum of Agreement for the purpose of developing a watershed plan.

The process is locally lead through a Policy Committee comprised of one elected official from each of the 13 Local Government Units within the watershed. It will involve a broad range of stakeholders throughout the process including the use of an Advisory Committee and public meetings. The resulting plan will address the most significant threats to our water resources and an implementation strategy that provides the greatest benefit to the watershed.

An overview of the Greater Zumbro River Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan (also known as Zumbro 1W1P) is available as an ESRI Storymap which can be found at https://arcg.is/1bnunW.     The Storymap walks through an overview of the planning process, the progress to date, our prioritized watershed issues and actions to improve them, the public input survey, and an interactive watershed map.  Our partnership will use the survey to gain feedback from watershed residents on activities and projects they would like to see accomplished in the watershed. Where should the local implementation workgroup focus our time in the next 10-years? What activities do they think will be most effective, and which will have little or no impact? We will utilize this feedback to help prioritize our workplan into the future.  After reviewing the information, please take time to fill out the Public Input Survey, which is found in Part 4 of the Storymap on the link. 

Greater Zumbro River One Watershed One Plan Waterside Chats 
Dodge County 2006-2016 Comprehensive Water Plan Includes 2017-2021 Amendment 

Dodge County Water Plan References:
Cedar River Watershed WRAPS
Zumbro River Watershed HSPF Scenarios
Root River Watershed WRAPS
Hydrologic and Hydraulic Model

The first 2 videos out of this series are very informational about the water flow in Southeast MN. For those interested - the SW half of Dodge County is in glacial till and the NE half is in a karst situation.  The videos explain how these differences affect our groundwater over time. 
Videos highlighting Groundwater and Nitrate Movement in Southeast Minnesota

Environmental Information Articles
Flooding Wells - March 2019
Use Salt Sparingly - December 2018
Time To Get Your Septic System Ready for Winter
- November 2018Buffers Ahead of Schedule for November Deadline- September 2018 
Be the Solution to Stormwater Pollution - August 2018

legacy logo rgbDodge County Wood Chip Bioreactor Story

How is Water Quality in Dodge County?
Click on the following link to view a power point presentation about the water quality in Dodge County.

The Environmental Services Office offer mail-in water analysis test kits for private wells that check for the following attributes:

  • Bacteria
  • Nitrate
  • Chloride
  • Lead
  • Arsenic
  • Fluoride

These kits may be used by the owner, or if a third party is required, an employee of the Environmental Services Department can take the test on site for an additional fee. Test kits can be obtained and paid for at the Environmental Services Office. Free test kits are available for the following:

  • Families with income qualifications through the Women, Infants, and Children program (WIC).
  • Households with expectant mothers or children less than 1 year old (Daycares excluded)
  • Shallow wells less than 60 feet deep.
  • Previously untested wells with known depth.

FEES  (Prices subject to change)
Bacteria/Nitrate combination kit                $56.00
Bacteria or Nitrate only                               $33.00
Lead  or Arsenic                                           $24.00
Cost for site visit to perform test                $70.00  

Minnesota Well Index (MWI) - MN Department of Health
The Dodge County Environmental Services Department at (507) 635-6273. Ask for Melissa DeVetter.