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Photo Credit: Jeff Kantor

Under current statute, county water plans and soil and water conservation district (SWCD) comprehensive plans are voluntary (Minnesota Statutes §103C.331, Subd. 11. “A district may develop and revise a comprehensive plan…”, and M.S. §103B.331, Subd. 1 “Each county is encouraged to develop and implement a local water management plan…”). In contrast, watershed districts statewide and watershed management organization plans in the metropolitan area are mandatory (M.S. §103D.401, Subd. 1 “The managers must adopt a watershed management plan…” and M.S. §103B.231, Subd. 1 “A watershed management plan is required for watersheds … wholly or partly within the metropolitan area…”). One Watershed, One Plan is also voluntary. However, all counties, SWCDs, and watershed districts are required to have a current plan to be eligible for state funding. BWSR’s vision for One Watershed, One Plan, developed with the Roundtable recommendation as a foundation, is to align local water planning on major watershed boundaries with state strategies towards prioritized, targeted, and measurable implementation plans – the next logical step in the evolution of water planning in Minnesota. Additional legislation passed in 2015 provides purposes and plan content requirements for comprehensive watershed management plans, clarifies that local government water plan authorities are retained when plans are substituted or replaced by a comprehensive watershed management plan, and requires BWSR to develop and adopt a transition plan with a goal for statewide transition by 2025.  

Koochiching County Local Water Management Plan​

In January 2017, Koochiching County Environmental Services and Koochiching Soil & Water Conservation District began updating the Koochiching County Comprehensive Local Water Management Plan (KCCLWMP) which expired on 12/31/2017. State agency review of the DRAFT 2018-2028 updated plan was recently completed and, pending review and comment by the Board of Water and Soil Resources, is expected to be approved by the end of April 2018.

Rainy River-Rainy Lake One Watershed One Plan






Local governments have worked hard over the years to protect and restore our water resources through planning efforts within each county. In recent years, the Minnesota Board of Soil and Water Resources encouraged local governments to partner with neighboring counties to work across jurisdictional boundaries and plan resources on a watershed wide scale. This process is called One Watershed One Plan (1W1P).