Gov. Mark Dayton recently announced the dates and locations of a series of water quality town hall meetings. The town halls will offer Minnesotans an opportunity to discuss the water quality challenges facing their communities and our state, learn from experts and engage with policymakers.

The town hall meetings build on the momentum from Gov. Dayton’s “25 by 25” water quality goal proposal, announced earlier this year.

“All Minnesotans have a stake in water that’s safe for drinking, swimming, and fishing,” said Dayton. “These town hall meetings will further the important conversations already happening across Minnesota around water quality. Together we can develop strategies and solutions that work for all of our communities.”

The town hall meetings will be attended by key members of Gov. Dayton’s cabinet who want to hear from Minnesotans about ways to improve the state’s water quality at the local level.

Ten town hall meetings have been scheduled in communities across Minnesota. These town hall meetings are free to attend and open to the public.

Each town hall meeting will run from 6:30-8:30 p.m. with registration beginning at 6 p.m. No advance registration is necessary.

In the area a meeting is being held in Marshall Aug. 17. The meeting is being held at Southwest Minnesota State University in the conference center.

In addition to attending the town hall meetings, Minnesotans are encouraged to host their own community meetings about water quality from July through August.

These community water meetings offer an opportunity for cities, schools, families and friends to identify ways individuals can work at the local level to move Minnesota towards the “25 by 25” goal.

Individuals interested in registering to hold their own community water meeting can find more information at www.eqb.state.mn.us.

Earlier this year, Gov. Dayton announced a new goal to improve Minnesota’s water quality 25 percent by 2025. Without additional action, the quality of Minnesota’s waters is expected to improve only 6 to 8 percent by 2034.

Achieving a 25 percent improvement in water quality statewide would require the state to take aggressive, yet achievable action. It also would help it meet existing commitments to reduce phosphorus and nitrogen.

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency