Metro Flood Diversion Authority Meeting Minutes
A virtual meeting of the Metro Flood Diversion Authority Land Management Committee was held on April 21, 2021. The following members were present: Mary Scherling, Cass County Commissioner; Kory Peterson, Mayor, City of Horace; Bruce Grubb, Fargo City Administrator; Kevin Campbell, Clay County Commissioner; Nathan Boerboom, Fargo Division Engineer; Rodger Olson, Cass County Joint Water Resource District; Duane Breitling, Cass County Commissioner; Jenny Mongeau, Clay County Commissioner and Bob Zimmerman, Moorhead City Engineer.
Members absent: Chuck Hendrickson, Moorhead City Council and Arlette Preston, Fargo City Commissioner.
Mrs. Scherling called the meeting to order at 3 PM. Roll call was taken, and a quorum was present.
Mr. Breitling moved to approve the agenda as presented and Mr. Boerboom seconded the motion. Motion carried.
3.APPROVAL OF MARCH 2021 MINUTES
Mr. Campbell moved to approve the March 2021 minutes and Mr. Zimmerman seconded the motion. Motion carried.
4. PROPERTY ACQUITISITION STATUS REPORT
Mr. Dodds indicated that a few more properties were acquired last month. Some properties have been converted and are no longer in LRED status. We are focusing on the Red River Structure; the final drawings for SE2 have been received from the USACE and the appraisal process has begun on these parcels. 238 parcels have been acquired for environmental monitoring easements.
Mrs. Scherling commented that she gets questions from property owners and directs them to the maps on our website. The feedback she receives is that it is confusing and asked if there is a way to simplify these maps.
Mr. Dodds indicated that updates are coming with map features. He also indicated that flooding is complicated, and that we don’t want to give the wrong answers.
Ms. Mongeau commented that she has received calls from landowners who are confused as to when their property will be up for discussion. Is there a way that we can let them know? Mr. Dodds indicated that they must work directly with their assigned land agents to find out when their property will be discussed.
5. SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT – CEMETERY MITIGATION UPDATE
Individual plans need to be put in place for each affected cemetery. Updates will be provided to the upstream every six months. The estimated timeframe for completion is 2026.
6. PRELIMINARY MAP BOOK OF POTENTIAL EXCESS LANDS
Mr. Dodds shared the map book for information only. It includes an inventory and data points of the excess lands that the DA currently owns and includes parcels inside and outside of the channel.
7. FLOWAGE EASEMENT STUDY UPDATE
Mr. Dodds reported that the Phase II study is being conducted by Crown Appraisals and there are 550 parcels in the study. The study will entail gathering and reviewing data and comparing the algorithms from the Phase I study. An educational video is being created to explain the process to property owners.
8. COMMITTEE UPDATE FOR DA BOArd
Mr. Dodds will provide the following update to the MFDA Board:
- Continue working on acquiring property for:
- Drain 27 Wetland Restoration Project
- Red River Control Structure
- Environmental Monitoring Easements
- Upstream Structures
- Acquired property interests on over 600 parcels (including those acquired via last
resort eminent domain, and including split parcels)
- Completed acquisitions for: Diversion Channel, Southern Embankment Reach 1, I-29 Road Raise, Wild Rice River Control Structure, and Diversion Inlet Structure
- Appraisal Work
- Starting appraisals on SE-2A
- Appraisals being completed for Upstream Structures
- Flowage Easement Valuation Study
- Phase 2 includes over 500 parcels with tillable land in the Upstream Mitigation
- Developing a video to explain the process to property owners
9. CCJWRD UPDATE
Mr. Olson reported that there are no issues at this time and that activity has slowed a bit. They are still working on the acquisition of a few properties.
10. MCCJPA UPDATE
Mr. Campbell reported that a farm lease was approved at the March meeting as well as the MSA with Tinjum. Six monitoring easements were also acquired.
At the meeting tomorrow, they will be considering the counteroffers on the Red River Control Structure parcels. They will also be working out the costs of operations and maintenance on the Minnesota side and reviewing the environmental assessment for the Drayton Dam.
11. MetroCOG UPDATE
There was no update.
12. OTHER BUSINESS
Mrs. Scherling asked if there is any land left in the Fargo-Moorhead area that still needs to be acquired. Mr. Boerboom stated that there are five properties left to acquire in Fargo and approximately 15-20 easements, primarily in the Woodcrest area.
Mr. Zimmerman indicated that they will be closing on eight properties next month in the Oakport area.
The next meeting will be May 26, 2021.
Mr. Breitling moved, and Mr. Campbell seconded to adjourn the meeting.
Meeting adjourned at 3:43 PM.