Committee reviews Sen. Nelson bill to provide funding for Kasson flood mitigation

(ABC 6 News) – The Minnesota Senate Capital Investment Committee recently reviewed a bill by Senator Carla Nelson (R-Rochester) to provide funding for the city of Kasson to make flood hazard mitigation and public water infrastructure improvements. 

The bill, Senate File 436, would provide $5,000,000 to Kasson for the replacement and renovation of sanitary sewer and stormwater infrastructure and systems, a water main, and roadway restoration.

The project calls for the construction of a stormwater impoundment upstream of Highway 14 to prevent flooding during large rain events and lower the 100-year flood elevation by approximately 2 feet throughout the city; replace City infrastructure in the hardest hit portions of the City; improve resistance to flooding; and reduce sanitary sewer backups in homes.

“This is about the safety and well-being of Kasson residents,” Nelson said. “This funding will enable the city of Kasson to make critical infrastructure improvements, which will reduce the frequency of flooding, prevent sanitary sewer backups and discharges, decrease closures of key roadways, reduce disruption of city services, and improve water quality. This is important for the quality of life in Kasson and to protect taxpayers from the full brunt of these needed improvements.”

Flooding near and above the 100-year flood elevation has occurred in Kasson four times in the last 15 years – 2007, 2010, and twice in 2019. These events caused significant damage to city infrastructure and private property resulting in major economic impacts.

The flooding in 2019 resulted in a State Disaster Declaration. 160 properties reported flooding, sewer backups, and flooded basements. Highways 14 and 57, as well as County Road 34 were shut down due to flooding. City sanitary sewer infrastructure was damaged, resulting in backups in homes and causing raw sewage to be discharged into public waters.