It’s time for the Clinton Conservation District to host our annual meeting. We would like to invite you to join us for dinner, our annual review, board elections, as well as a presentation titled, “Projected Climate Changes in the Great Lakes Region and their Potential Impacts on Agriculture” given by Dr. David Lusch. The meeting will be held at AgroLiquid (3055 M-21, St. Johns) on March 28th and will start with dinner at 5 pm. If you are a Clinton County resident and unable to attend the Annual Meeting but still want to participate in the board elections, Absentee ballots are available at the Clinton Conservation District office. You may also request an absentee ballot be sent to you via phone or email. Please contact Kelcie Sweeney at firstname.lastname@example.org or 989-534-3107 with any questions or to request a ballot.
The Looking Glass River Intercounty Drainage Board recently completed a river cleanup project. The details of the project as well as a list of frequently asked questions are included below.
Q: How did a portion of the Looking Glass River become an Intercounty Drain?
A: A portion of the Looking Glass River was established as a drain by acts of the Michigan
Legislature as early as 1881, Public Act 239 of 1881 and Public Act 84 of 1885, to address
water conveyance issues. In 1886 improvements were made to approximately 36 miles
of the river/drain based on an Order Establishing Improvements that included dredging
and log jam removal.
Q: Why does this make it an established drain today?
A: Current state law provides that any watercourse established as a public drain in
accordance with the law in existence at the time it was established is recognized as a
public drain today.
Q: Where does the Looking Glass River Intercounty Drain begin and end?
A: Based on the 1886 Order Establishing Improvements, the point of beginning of the
Looking Glass River Intercounty Drain is approximately the point where the river crosses
the township line between Dewitt and Olive Townships in Clinton County and the point
of ending is the county line between Shiawassee and Livingston Counties.
Q: What areas does the Looking Glass River Intercounty Drain serve?
A: The Looking Glass River Intercounty Drain serves portions of Bath, Dewitt, Olive and
Victor Townships in Clinton County; portions of Sciota, Woodhull, Bennington,
Shiawassee, Perry and Antrim Townships in Shiawassee County; portions of Meridian,
Williamstown and Locke Townships in Ingham County, and a portion of Conway
Township in Livingston County.
Q: Who has jurisdiction over the Looking Glass River Intercounty Drain?
A: An intercounty drain board chaired by a representative from the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) and the Drain Commissioners from
Clinton, Livingston, Ingham and Shiawassee Counties oversee the operation and
maintenance of the drain.
Q: What is a drainage district?
A: A drainage district is a land area benefitting from an established drain. Under Michigan
law, a drainage district is a public corporation authorized to build and maintain a drain, and to own land and hold property rights necessary for that purpose. It is also authorized to assess lands within its boundaries.
Q: Why is a property included within a drainage district?
A: Generally, a property is determined to be in a drainage district if runoff from that property drains to, or has the potential to drain to, an established drain.
Q: Why are changes to the drainage district boundaries being considered?
A: In many cases, drainage district boundaries were established decades or even a century ago. Since that time, changes in land use, surface composition, and topography may have
occurred that alter historic drainage patterns. These alterations can change whether, and to what extent, properties are now benefitted by a drain.
Q: How does property included in a drainage district benefit from the drain?
A: County drains are an important part of public infrastructure in much the same way as roads, water mains, and sanitary sewers. Although drains may not be visible, they provide an outlet for storm water runoff and reduce the risk of property damage caused by flooding.
Q: How will we know if our property is located within the Looking Glass River
Intercounty Drain Drainage District?
A: A map has been prepared based on topographic and other information identifying the
land served by the established portion of the Looking Glass Intercounty Drain depicting
the boundaries of the proposed revisions to its drainage district. You will receive a Notice
for Day of Review indicating the date, time and place when these proposed boundary
revisions will be reviewed.
Q: What happens on the Day of Review of Drainage District Boundaries?
A: On the Day of Review, historical drainage district boundaries will be updated so that all
properties currently benefiting from the drain are included, and the properties not
benefiting from the drain are excluded. The Day of Review of Drainage District
Boundaries provides property owners with an opportunity to provide input and participate in the decision-making process and share information and local knowledge about lands involved.
Q: What maintenance work does the Drainage Board intend to have done on the Looking
Glass River Intercounty Drain?
A: The maintenance work proposed for the drain involves removal of log jams and flood
wood from the drain channel. It also will include selective clearing of trees (leaners) along
the drain right-of-way and drain banks. Clearing of trees will reduce the occurrence of
trees falling into the river/drain reducing the incidence of future log jams.
Q: What are the benefits of the maintenance work proposed?
A: Removing trees and log jams will allow the water along the river/drain to move freely,
reducing the extent of soil erosion and sedimentation causing damage to the river and
flooding to surrounding areas. Clearing the river from debris and improving conveyance
along the river channel will create indirect benefits to wildlife, hunting, recreation, and
Q: How much will the maintenance work cost?
A: Maintenance cost is limited by the Michigan Drain Code to $5,000 per mile of drain per
year. For the Looking Glass River Intercounty Drain, the maximum annual cost would be
$180,000 ($5,000 x 36 miles = $180,000) per maintenance project.
Q: Who will pay the cost?
A: In accordance with the Michigan Drain Code, the maintenance costs will be assessed to
those who benefit from the existence and operation of the drain. Those benefiting include
the counties for benefit to county roads, MDOT, railroads, townships and the landowners
within the drainage district.
The Clinton Conservation District is seeking bids for habitat improvement work in the Rose Lake and Maple River State Game Areas.
Through a Wildlife Habitat Grant awarded by the DNR, the District is looking to establish and improve 126 acres of small game and pheasant habitat. This is the second Wildlife Habitat Grant managed through the Clinton Conservation District, and this project will build upon work already completed in the previous project. All sites slated for improvement are open to public hunting.
For more information and bid packets, please stop by the office, give us a call or email Kelcie Sweeney email@example.com for more information.
The Clinton Conservation District is happy to announce the award of a Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Habitat grant to restore and create habitat in the Rose Lake and Maple River State Game Areas. The Clinton County Pheasant and Small Game Habitat Enhancement Project officially started in October 2017 and continues through September 2019. The project total is $62,330 and will be completed through the partnership of the Gratiot Conservation District, Clinton Lakes Pheasant Co-op and the Clinton County Chapter of Pheasants Forever.
Two sites in the Rose Lake State Game Area and one site in the Maple River State Game Area will receive improvements. All three sites are open to public hunting.
The work scheduled to be done in the Rose Lake State Game Area spans 94 acres. A site located off Upton Road will have a perennial five-acre food plot adjacent to a cool season grass field covering 16 acres. An additional 73 acres of habitat will consist of a 34 acres warm season grass planting, 14 acres cool season grass restoration, 15 acres warm season grass enhancement, and 20 acres switchgrass.
The site within the Maple River State Game Area is located off West Hyde Road and spans 22 acres. Two switchgrass plots are divided by an acre that will be planted with native fruiting shrubs. This site will provide winter cover and food for small game and pheasants.
The District will be seeking local contractors to complete this work this winter.
Our fall newsletter is here! Check it out to see what the conservation district has been up to this fall.
Conservation districts around Michigan use Natural Resource Assessments to help guide programs to serve the needs of their communities. The Natural Resource Assessment is completed every five years to continually gauge what’s important to you and your family now.
The Clinton Conservation District uses the results in a variety of ways that includes seeking funding for programs that are needed to fulfill the community’s natural resource concerns. The Natural Resource Assessment will help the District write grants that focus on the areas the community sees as most valuable, will help guide the MAEAP Technician goals and help us know where to spend our time on education.
Below are a few of the most important survey results. As always, please call or email our office with any questions.
The Mid-Michigan CISMA is turning ONE!
What is a CISMA?
CISMA stands for Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area. The CISMA has many organizations partner together to educate people, young and old, about invasive species and their effects on our environment. CISMAs also track the spread of invasive species and help facilitate treatment of priorities species and sites.
Where is the Mid-Michigan CISMA located?
The Mid-Michigan CISMA (or MM-CISMA) is comprised of Ingham, Eaton, Clinton and Ionia counties. The MM-CISMA Coordinator, Erin Jarvie, is based out the Ingham Conservation District office in Mason. Locally, conservation districts in Clinton, Eaton and Ionia counties serve as the first source of invasive species information.
What invasive species are we tracking?
The MM-CISMA prioritizes three species: black swallow-wort, Japanese knotweed and non-native phragmites. The MM-CISMA also raises awareness about other state priority invasive species including aquatic and insect invasive species.
What has the MM-CISMA done in just ONE year?
- Doubled the number of reports to the Midwest Invasive Species Information Network. View, Learn and Report invasive species at misin.msu.edu
- Engaged over 80 volunteers in local invasive species identification and survey events. Go to the MM-CISMA website at inghamconservation.com/mm-cisma to learn about upcoming opportunities!
- Held FOUR Aquatic Invasive Species Events at boat launches to raise awareness about aquatic hitchhikers and regulations regarding cleaning your boat.
- Trained 58 local municipal employees to identify invasive species and understand the impact invasive species can have on a community.
- Directly interacted with 4,000 people through outreach events and a further 200,000 people through news articles, social media and advertising.
Want more information?
LIKE the MM-CISMA’s Facebook page or contact the MM-CISMA Coordinator!
Erin Jarvie, MM-CISMA Coordinator
It is our philosophy that decisions on conservation issues should be made at the local level by local people…and we want to hear from you! Every five years the Clinton Conservation District seeks input from county residents on the natural resource concerns within Clinton County. This survey helps the Conservation District prioritize efforts and direct resources toward the most important natural resource needs of the County. We have developed a simple, short survey that will allow you to tell us what is important to you. Surveys can be completed online by clicking here or you can download a copy that can be filled out and faxed, mailed, emailed, or dropped off at the Conservation District office. We would also be happy to send you a paper survey upon request. All responses will be kept strictly confidential. Please complete surveys by April 30, 2017.
Our 2017 spring newsletter is now available. Take a look and find out all the great things we’ve been up to.
We are pleased to announce our 63rd Annual Meeting and Banquet. Please join us for dinner, presentations from staff on last year’s accomplishments and announcement of the 2017 Conservationist of the Year.
In addition, Dr. Deb McCullough, an entomologist and professor at Michigan State University, will be the keynote speaker for the evening. She will talk about the impacts from invasive species like Emerald Ash Borer and our newest forest threat, Hemlock Woolly Adelgid, on Michigan’s forests and the timber industry.
The annual meeting will take place Tuesday March 21st from 5:30-8pm at AgroLiquid Fertilizers, 3055 W. M-21 St. Johns, Michigan 48879. This family friendly event is free and open to the public, but please RSVP by Friday, March 17th so we know how many places to set. Call 989-224-3720 x5, email, or contact us through Facebook to tell us how many are coming.
We hope to see you there!