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Silver Lake Dam funds — nearly $2.4 million — pass first vote in Minnesota Legislature

May 1—ROCHESTER — Legislation together with nearly $2.4 million in state grants for

modifications to Silver Lake Dam

has been authorised in the Minnesota House.

As a part of the

2024 Legacy Budget invoice,

House members voted 118-13 on Tuesday to approve the dam funding as a part of a reported $240 million in tasks all through the state.

The funds come from state gross sales taxes as a part of the 2008 voter-approved Legacy Amendment.

The Silver Lake Dam undertaking seeks to switch the present dam with a brand new construction meant to maintain the majority of the lake at its present degree whereas offering elevated leisure actions and alternatives for fish and wildlife passage.

The state funds are tied to the intent to revive and improve aquatic habitat in Silver Lake and the south fork of the Zumbro River.

The Legacy Budget Bill nonetheless requires a Senate vote for approval, and modifications to the 2 payments may require added evaluate and future votes.

In addition to funding for the proposed dam modification, the House model of the Legacy Budget Bill contains:

* Nearly $2.5 million to revive and improve trout habitat in focused watersheds of southeast Minnesota.

* $3 million to amass Southeast Minnesota lands for conservation easements and to revive and improve wildlife habitat on public lands.

* Nearly $1.5 million to speed up restoration and enhancement of prairies, grasslands, and savannas in wildlife administration areas, together with in bluff prairies on state forest land in Southeast Minnesota.

* $3 million for water-quality-related tasks in Southeast Minnesota as a part of an agriculture finest administration practices mortgage program.

With the Legislature scheduled to adjourn by May 20, a ultimate choice on the anticipated funding is predicted later this month.

Meanwhile, work continues on engineering the proposed undertaking, with Rochester City Council approval in 2020 to work on a 30% design of the proposed modification.

Rochester Deputy Public Works Director Aaron Luckstein mentioned the objective is to have 30% of the dam design work accomplished this month for Rochester City Council evaluate. The council can even want to find out whether or not it’s going to settle for the state funding, if authorised.

The state funds are a portion of deliberate spending on the estimated $5.5 million dam modification undertaking.

Rochester Public Utilities is predicted to be requested to supply $2 million that may in any other case be spent on dam repairs and upkeep in upcoming years, and $1.1 million is predicted to come back from flood-control reserves.

Ahead of the anticipated City Council dialogue, Friends of Silver Lake has invited Luckstein to current plans for the dam undertaking, together with deliberate dredging, throughout a public assembly.

“There needs to be more information provided to citizens, as well as council members,” Friends member Greg Munson mentioned as he issued the

invitation throughout a current council assembly.

Luckstein mentioned he has agreed to take part in the assembly, which has been scheduled for six:30 p.m. May 21 at 125 Live, 125 Elton Hills Drive.

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