In 1991, the Minnesota Legislature passed the Wetland Conservation Act (WCA). Board of Water and Soil Resources administrative rules Chapter 8420 (Rules) implement the WCA's purpose.

  • achieve no net loss of existing wetlands;
  • restore diminished wetlands;
  • avoid wetlands impacts; and
  • replace unavoidable impacts (Rules 8420.0100).

Wetlands must not be drained, excavated, or filled unless replaced by restoring or creating wetlands of at least equal public value (Rules 8420.0105).

Wetlands exist where these three conditions occur: (1) hydric soils; (2) surface or subsurface hydrology; and (3) hydrophytic vegetation (Rules 8420.0111 Subp. 72). Wetland boundaries must be determined according to the 1987 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Wetlands Delineation Manual (Rules 8420.0405). Eagan wetlands regulations require Certified Minnesota Wetland Professionals to describe wetlands.

The City makes WCA decisions according to Rules 8420.0200.

Rules 8420.0410 allow some activities if they don't result in permanent loss or impacts. Rules 8420.0420 exempt certain impacts from wetlands replacement requirements. Rules 8420.0420, Subp. 8 allow several "de minimis" (minimum surface area) exemptions, depending on wetland type and location.

No person may impact a wetland, wholly or partially, without being eligible for an exemption or no-loss, or first having a City-approved wetland replacement plan. Before approval, the City must ensure the applicant has demonstrated the activity impacting a wetland complies with "sequencing" requirements (Rules 8420.0520).

Applicants may appeal wetland decisions (Rules 8420.0905).

DNR conservation officers and other peace officers may issue cease and desist orders and restoration and replacement orders for WCA violations (Rules 8420.0900). Violations of orders are misdemeanors the county attorney must prosecute.

If you suspect a WCA violation, get as much information as possible and report as soon as possible. Call 911 (24 hours/day, 365 days/year), report an issue, or call the Code Enforcement Hotline at (651) 675-5687.