At its meeting last Tuesday, the Chippewa County Board of Commissioners discussed and approved the Hawk Creek One Watershed, One Plan Project. The Minnesota Board of Soil and Water Resources developed policies for the coordination and development of comprehensive watershed management plans, and Minnesota counties have been authorized to develop and implement a local water management plan.

All counties, soil and water conservation districts, and watershed districts within the Hawk Creek Watershed must develop a comprehensive watershed management plan by 2025 as required by Minnesota statutes. Chippewa County recognizes watershed-scale planning efforts and is willing to collaborate with the counties, soil and water conservation districts, and watershed districts within the Hawk Creek Watershed for watershed-scale planning efforts in the future. The counties, soil and conservation districts, and watershed districts within the Hawk Creek portion of the Minnesota River/Yellow Medicine River Major Watershed have the option to change the One Watershed, One Plan suggested watershed boundaries for the Hawk Creek Watershed during the development process if they determine it is in the best interest of all parties involved.

After discussing the matter, the board adopted a resolution supporting an application to the Board of Water and Soil Resources for a planning grant to develop a comprehensive management plan. By doing so, they anticipate entering into a Memorandum of Agree­ment with the counties, soil and water conservation and watershed districts within the Hawk Creek Watershed to collaborate on this effort, pending selection as a recipient of a planning grant.

In other business, Chris Konechne of Finley Engineering, and Doug Dawson, CCG, presented the results of the Broadband Feasibility Study. The board directed Konechne and Dawson to set up meetings with prospective partners for a broadband project. The board discussed pocket gopher trapping and decided against offering a bounty for gophers.

Also discussed by the commissioners was the appointment of one of its members to the Chippewa County-Montevideo Hospital Board. Commissioner David Lieser was appointed to serve on the CCMH board. Drainage inspector Josh Macziewski met with the board to discuss buffer enforcement.

The commissioners appointed Macziewski to enforce the County’s buffer ordinance. The board next discussed the MN BWSR Drainage Records Modernization Grant. The board authorized the completion of the Drainage Records Geodatabase Request Form and submission of the county’s hydrographic data to BWSR in compliance with the grant agreement.

Improvement of the Milan bike trail was discussed. County Engineer Steve Kubista was authorized to research different options and related costs for improving the bike trail. The meeting was closed at 3:35 p.m. to conduct a supervisor performance evaluation. The meeting was reopened to the public at 3:58 p.m.

An annual report submitted by Maintenance Supervisor Joey Buseman was approved. Buseman also approved to Step 7 in Pay Grade 7 effective as of Feb. 1, 2018. The board also discussed the status of the remodeling being done at the Community Service Center. The board approved the project completion and authorized a final payment of $8,779.50 to Johnson Construction.