If an improvement is made to the drainage district that increases capacity of the outlet system, impacts to wetlands will need to be considered both under the Farm Bill and Clean Water Act.
To determine if wetlands will be impacted, the Natural Resources Conservation Service of Iowa (NRCS) requires that all lands in the watershed must have a wetland determination completed prior to any construction by the district.
The landowners or their tenants are the only individuals that can request this determination. If a landowner does not request a certified wetland determination and the district proceeds with an improvement project, the landowner may be found to be in violation of the farm program rules and not eligible for program benefits.
In addition, the USDA could file claim for refund of farm program payments.