Public Land Survey System (PLSS)
The mission of the County Surveyor's Office is to identify, restore, and preserve the Public Land Survey corners in Goodhue County, in order to protect the public's interest in their land. There were approximately 2,325 Public Land Survey corners established by the Federal Government between 1853 and 1856. Therefore, in order to fulfill this mission, it is necessary that the County Surveyor research all available records from all sources, such as the township road records, private surveyor's records, utility company records, and citizen testimony about the location of the Public Land Survey corners.
Geographic Information System (GIS)
The County Surveyor's Office is also responsible for the development, implementation, and maintenance of the Geographic Information System (GIS) for Goodhue County. GIS uses geographical data sets to aid County departments, communities, and citizens in land related decisions. Data sets include, but are not limited to, parcel information, aerial photography, contours, and PLS data.
The County Surveyor's Office provides a service to many county departments. The office restores and preserves the Public Land Survey corners in the county roads pursuant to Minnesota Statute Chapter 160.15 for the Highway Department. The office also surveys and describes any parcels of land the county needs to purchase. Under the authority of Minnesota Statute Chapter 389.09 and Goodhue County Ordinance 2-78, the County Surveyor checks and approves all subdivision plats, CIC's, and registered land surveys. These documents are checked for mathematical accuracy and compliance with the appropriate laws. Goodhue County Ordinance 2-78 also requires any licensed land surveyor performing a survey of land within the county to file a copy of the survey with the County Surveyor's Office. It is the duty of the County Surveyor to file the copies for public record and make them available to the public at reasonable times.