Much of the Mt. Valley Township in Winnebago County has been converted over to wetland restoration and another project is on the horizon if the NCRS has its way. In a meeting this week of the Winnebago County Board of Supervisors, J. D. Gilman and Mike Webster of the NRCS presented to neighboring landowners a proposal to return portions of Drainage Districts 83, 88, 89, and 101 into a wetland. The project would not cost landowners anything but may affect their drainage.
Gilman addressed the concerns of landowners.
The project involves creating dams along county roads and developing up to 10 small to medium-sized ponds that would be bordered with non-perforated tile. The ponds could grow in size to take in drainage from upstream and would release water into drainage systems under the dams and staged release points.
Landowners were not as impressed as one might think. One of those landowners is John Johnson who addressed the Board and Gilman on the issue.
Gilman reminded the Board that landowners are responsible for maintaining their properties. Farmers around the proposed wetland were concerned that trees would overtake the property, particularly around drainage systems. They cited other wetland locations where trees were dominating the landscape and rooting themselves into drainage systems and those areas were not being cleaned out properly.
The Supervisors listened to the discussion but took no action on approving the project.