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Winona County Soil & Water Conservation District

 P.O. Box 39, 400 Wilson Street

 Lewiston, MN 55952

 Phone: (507) 523-2171 Ext. 3

Winona Co. SWCD:

Clean Water Land & Legacy Amendment

Providing Conservation Assistance in Winona County Since 1938

History of Winona Co. SWCD

Vision Statement:


To encourage preservation and conservation of the natural resources of Winona County through advocating sustainable use and respect of the uniqueness and aesthetic value of our landscape for present and future generations.

SWCDs (Soil and Water Conservation Districts) are local units of government that manage and direct natural resource management programs at the local level.

 Minnesota’s 91 SWCDs cover the entire state and generally follow county lines.

What is an SWCD?

SWCD Background:

BWSR on SWCDs SWCD Operational Handbook Supervisor's Handbook

What Are Your Conservation Needs?


Stop by the SWCD office with your conservation needs:



Staff is on hand to discuss your situation or we can come out and take a look at the problem and offer potential solutions.  If it is beyond our technical expertise we will do our best to connect you with someone who can help.


In addition to technical assistance, there may be financial assistance available for your conservation needs.  There are a few options for financial assistance available through the SWCD or others through our partner agency the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS).


Although there are a number of financial assistance options available, not all projects are eligible and funds are limited.  Funding for conservation work is not always immediately available, so contact us early to allow time to acquire funding. Some funds only approve project funding once or twice a year.  For others, we may need to put together a list of specific projects, cost estimates, and environmental benefits of these projects and submit an application for funding.


The application process could take up to a year from start to finish and are highly competitive, often with less than 10% of the applicants being funded statewide.


For information on the various programs and practices we are most often involved with, go to the following link: SWCD Programs


You can email the Winona County SWCD, or contact us at (507)523-2171, extension:

108 for Lance Klessig

114 for Amanda Gentry

112 for Daryl Buck


Mission Statement:


We are a locally elected unit of government promoting soil and water conservation and environmental protection through landowner assistance, educational and planning activities, and coordination of public and private efforts and by serving as a forum on natural resource issues.

Ag Certainty Program Goes Statewide:

Landowners throughout the state of Minnesota have an opportunity to become certified that they meet current water quality goals and standards.  This is part of a project called the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP).  To learn more about this program, contact Mark Root at Winona County SWCD:

Mark.Root@winonaswcd.com

Or go to MAWQCP

Minnesota’s 2015 Buffer Law:

SWCDs across the state will be assisting landowners in complying with the 2015 MN Buffer Law.

SWCDs are also required to:

Landowners on public waters must be in compliance by November 1, 2017

More Buffer Law Information

The Latest News…

Public Hearings set for the

Root River, One Watershed One Plan

Open Houses and Public Hearings are set for the Root River One Watershed One Plan.

Open Houses; 6:30-7:30 PM

Public Hearings; start at 7:30 PM

September 7: Stewartville Civic Center, 120 City Center (SE Corner of Hwy 30 & 63)

September 8: Caledonia, Houston County Justice Center, 306 S. Marshall St.

Click here for more information.

More News…!

Free Nitrate Tests for Certain Winona Co. Rural Wells:

The Winona County SWCD has teamed with the MN Department of Ag (MDA) to offer free nitrate tests for rural wells in the following Winona County townships:

Elba, Fremont, Hart, Hillsdale, Mount Vernon, Norton, Pleasant Hill,

St. Charles, Saratoga, Utica, Warren, Wilson, and Wiscoy

Letters already started to go out and water test kits will follow about a week after the initial letter.  For more information, please contact Daryl Buck at:

507-523-2171 ext. 112, Daryl.Buck@winonaswcd.com, 400 Wilson Street, Lewiston, MN


Mailing of the Water Test Kits is almost done.  If you have received a test kit and not yet sent in your water sample,  please do so soon.  Thank you.


Well Owner’s Handbook

Winona County SWCD Hires Summer Apprentice

Winona County SWCD is happy to welcome Haley Boltjes to the district for a summer-long apprenticeship position. She will work alongside SWCD staff on projects such as stream monitoring for Aquatic Invasive Species, feedlot runoff improvements, and CRP enrollment. Boltjes was hired through the Conservation Apprenticeship Academy, a program of Conservation Corps Minnesota that has placed 31 apprentices in SWCDs throughout Minnesota to learn hands-on skills in managing soil and water resources.

Haley is from Adrian, Minn. where she grew up on a small beef farm. She has recently graduated with a degree in Environmental Biology from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota in Winona.

Apprentices serve as AmeriCorps members and receive a monthly living stipend as well as an education award to use towards qualifying education and student loan expenses. The service term runs from May 16-August 12.

The program is funded through the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resource Trust Fund and LCCMR.

For more information on the AIS program in Winona County, email Haley Boltjes or Amanda Gentry or call the Winona Co. SWCD at 507-523-2171 extension 114.





Haley Boltjes

Major Watersheds of

Winona County:

Winona County is covered by three major watersheds:

Mississippi River - Winona: including the Whitewater, Trout Run (St. Charles & Elba Township), Beaver, Trout Valley (Mount Vernon Township) and Adams; Latsch; Deering, Speltz, Straight, Bear, Rupprecht, Rollingstone and Middle Valley; Peterson, Garvin, and Stockton Valley; Gilmore and Lake Winona; West and East Burns (Wilson Township); Pleasant; Homer; Cedar; and Big & Little Trout (Pickwick).

Root River: including Trout Run and Money (Saratoga Township); Pine (Fremont & Hart Townships), Hemmingway and Coolridge; Ferguson, Rush and Ahrensfeld; Gernander, Schueler, Wiscoy, Money, Hippie and Corey; Campbell; Looney; and Silver.

Mississippi River - La Crescent: including Pine (Pleasant Hill & New Hartford Township), Rose Valley, Lane Valley, Richmond, Miller, Dakota and Burns Valley (Dresbach Township).

September 14th  Board Meeting

Winona Co. SWCD Welcomes Lance Klessig as their new Resource Specialist

Click here to learn about Lance