In June 1985 the cities of Apple Valley, Burnsville, Eagan, Lakeville and Savage executed a joint powers agreement establishing and empowering the BDWMO. The BDWMO was formed in response to the requirements of the Metropolitan Surface Water Management Act. The Act required, among other things, the preparation of watershed management plans in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. The Water Resources Board (now the Board of Water and Soil Resources) formally approved the first Black Dog Watershed Management Plan in November 1989.
In 1999, the Dakota County portion of the Credit River WMO was added to the BDWMO. As a result, the member cities executed a revised and restated joint powers agreement, and the BDWMO and Scott County signed a memorandum of understanding regarding the management of the Credit River portion of the BDWMO.
In 2002, the Board of Water and Soil Resources approved the BDWMO’s Second Generation Watershed Management Plan.