Lake County's environmental specialist started his new position this week.
John Maursetter of Sioux Falls is a South Dakota State University graduate. He holds both a bachelor's and master's degree in agronomy. His master's degree focuses specifically on water quality.
In recent months, Maursetter has been fixing up a farm house southwest of Colton. His past experience was with a water quality demonstration project in the Big Sioux Aquifer. Maursetter said he was part of phase II of the project, which involved recruiting farmers and working with them to introduce different farming practices. One of those practices was irrigation management, which involved keeping track of when fields were irrigated and testing for moisture to determine when irrigation was necessary. Other aspects of the project included working with producers who had livestock waste facilities.
Maursetter said the first thing he plans as environmental specialist is to get a clear picture of the activity taking place and what goals the county commission has in mind.
"For a while, a lot of water quality positions dried up with federal funding," he said. "This is one of the first that's not relied on federal funding. It will be nice to start on the ground floor and set it up."