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Minnesota Agencies

Information on Minnesota State Agencies, Boards, Task Forces, and Commissions

Compiled by the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library

Upper Mississippi River Basin Association

Also known as:
Active dates:1984 -

The Association is a regional interstate organization formed by the Governors of Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin to coordinate the states' river-related programs and policies and work with federal agencies that have river responsibilities. UMRBA is involved with programs related to commercial navigation, ecosystem restoration, water quality, aquatic nuisance species, hazardous spills, flood risk management, water supply, and other water resource issues.

Preceded by:
Upper Mississippi River Basin Commission

The Association was created in 1981 to succeed the Upper Mississippi River Basin Commission, pursuant to an August joint resolution of the governors of Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin. The joint resolution endorsed the creation of a successor agency to the Commission in order to maintain communication and cooperation among the states on matters related to water resources planning and management. Minnesota's membership has been reaffirmed and continued by executive order.

The Upper Mississippi River Basin Commission (UMRBC) was in place from 1972-1981. The Commission was terminated by a Presidential Order in 1981. The final act of the UMRBC was to submit its "Comprehensive Master Plan for the Management of the Upper Mississippi River System" to Congress. The plan ultimately led to Congressional recognition of the Upper Mississippi as a "nationally significant ecosystem and a nationally significant commercial navigation system." This Congressional finding came as part of the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 1986, which embodied most of the UMRBC's recommendations in the Master Plan.


The member states of the Association are represented by gubernatorial appointees. Generally, the governor's designee is from the agency with the most direct responsibility for water resource management.

Six federal agencies also participate in the UMRBA as advisory members including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Department of Agriculture (Natural Resources Conservation Service), Department of Homeland Security (Coast Guard and Federal Emergency Management Agency), Department of the Interior (Fish and Wildlife Service and Geological Survey), Department of Transportation (Maritime Administration), and Environmental Protection Agency.

In 1995, Minnesota's designee was Cindy Jepsen, Chair of Minnesota Environmental Quality Board.


The Legislative Library has the "Annual report - Upper Mississippi River Basin Commission" for the years 1972-1987.

Forging a new framework for the future: A report to the governors on state and federal management of the Upper Mississippi River. Upper Mississippi River Basin Association, August 1995.
News clippings and documents. Agencies Notebook Collection, 1972-1984.
Record last updated: 08/08/2023

All information on this group from the Library’s collection of agency notebooks has been digitized. These materials are incorporated into the “documents/articles” section of the record. Please contact a librarian with any questions. The Minnesota Agencies database is a work in progress.

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