Dane County Board approves 2019 budget
On Monday, November 12th, the Dane County Board of Supervisors voted to adopt the 2019 Dane County budget. The adopted budget includes significant investments for water quality improvements and flood mitigation. The budget initiatives include water quality improvements supported by Clean Lakes Alliance and outlined in the Yahara CLEAN Strategic Action Plan for Phosphorus Reduction. These measures will move us in the right direction to reduce runoff and increase infiltration.
Water quality initiatives outlined in the 2019 Dane County budget:
- $750,000 to convert lands at a greater risk of runoff into prairies and grasses, which will improve infiltration and reduce runoff to our lakes.
- $8 million to permanently secure properties and improve the County’s ability to reduce stormwater runoff and improve water quality in key areas.
- $1 million in matching grants for park and trail repair and a $500,000 fund for stream restoration.
- $1 million added to the Urban Water Quality Grant Program with a new stormwater volume control project category. This will help fund projects addressing water quality by reducing runoff.
- $1 million in new money for Yahara CLEAN, which will help fund projects to improve water quality and reduce phosphorus and sediment runoff.
- $200,000 to evaluate feasibility and design of additional “Cow Power” digesters in the Mendota Watershed to further reduce runoff and carbon emissions.
- $25,000 for updated lake clean-up plan, in partnership with Clean Lakes Alliance.
Reducing runoff and increasing infiltration
Reducing flooding potential and increasing lake health can be achieved through the 2019 Dane County budget. According to Dane County, increased rainfall only relates to a 50% increase in the flow of the Yahara River. The other 50% comes from more urban and suburban stormwater runoff from streets, parking lots, rooftops, and other hard surfaces. Clean Lakes Alliance supports measures such as creating rain gardens, using rain barrels, and using water permeable surfaces. (Find out more ways to help our lakes here).
The budget will help to both prepare Dane County for future flooding, and will improve the health of our lakes. Thank you to everyone who helped advocate for our lakes along with Clean Lakes Alliance!
Read the full 2019 Dane County budget proposal here.