Denver Water first to issue Build America Bonds

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Here’s the release from Denver Water via Stacy Chesney.

Denver Water is on board with provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, being the first organization in the state to issue Build America Bonds. From their release (no deep link available):

While most government agencies, including Denver Water, traditionally issue tax-exempt bonds, the Build America Bonds are taxable bonds with a 35 percent federal subsidy on interest costs. Denver Water awarded $44 million of Build America Bonds to Wachovia Bank National Association at just over 6 percent interest on a taxable basis. However, because of the federal tax subsidy, Denver Water actually will pay 3.94 percent interest. That amount is less than Denver Water’s outstanding tax-exempt bonds, on which it pays an average of 4.23 percent interest.

The bond will allow Denver Water to pay for capital projects, such as infrastructure improvements, at a lower interest rate than it would if it had issued a tax-exempt bond.

More Coyote Gulch coverage here.

Fountain Creek Flood Control and Greenway District should be in place next month

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From The Pueblo Chieftain (Chris Woodka):

The interim board met Friday, and decided the new board can be in place next month. The members, all of whom will serve on the new board or expect to be appointed, received a green light from legal counsel for both El Paso and Pueblo counties. The board also began the task of filling slots on a citizens advisory group and creating a technical advisory committee for the district board as it transfers tasks set up under an intergovernmental agreement to the district created by the Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Bill Ritter.

More Coyote Gulch coverage here and here.

Morgan County Quality Water District source water protection plan

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Here’s a update on the source water protection plan proposed by Brush and the Morgan County Quality Water District, from Dan Barker writing for The Fort Morgan Times. From the article:

Stakeholders for the city of Brush and the Morgan County Quality Water District set some boundaries Wednesday around local aquifers which will be protected and watched for any sign of contaminants which could get into the water table, said Colleen Williams, source water specialist for Colorado Rural Water. Those included aquifers under the Krause Well Field in Weld County near Morgan County, the Weingardt Well Field in the eastern part of Morgan County and the Smart Well Field in the western part of the county, she said. Brush and Quality Water both have wells in the Smart Well Field, and Quaity Water in the other well fields.

This was the third in a series of meetings designed to set up those boundaries and set limits on what can happen above and near aquifers, she said. This process began when the Environmental Protection Agency asked states to look at where people get their drinking water and to plan to keep it clean under the Safe Drinking Water Act, she said. Wednesday’s Quality Water meeting was focused on what concerns the area may have about possible sources of contaminants to water supplies. A big concern is how well the operators of oil and natural gas wells do in making sure that oil and brackish water from oil wells are controlled, Williams said. At one site in the Krause Well Field, she found oil on the ground near a sealed and abandoned oil well, and wondered if it was leaking, she said…

A big concern is how well the operators of oil and natural gas wells do in making sure that oil and brackish water from oil wells are controlled, Williams said…

Other sources of contamination could be agricultural chemical use, spills due to the crash or overturn of trucks carrying hazardous materials, hazardous waste facilities, residential practices and livestock production.

Most of those are not a problem in the sandy dunes which surround the aquifers in the Morgan County areas, Kokes said. Livestock does not like the area, nor do developers, and it is not good farm land, he said…

The source water project wants to set up barriers to contamination, but often the best barrier is education, Williams said. People need to know not to let contaminants like chemicals soak into the ground, and that alone will be a preventive measure, she said. Voluntary measures to promote management practices to protect and enhance drinking water are best, Williams said. The idea is to engage the community members as stewards of the water sources. Individuals need to take personal responsibility, she said. What water managers need is a tool to educate the public and their various boards, said Don Marymee, water foreman for Brush. It is important to draw boundary lines to help in management, because the areas where contaminants could affect the groundwater supply are larger than most people think, Kokes said. “This kind of dialogue helps,” he said.

More Coyote Gulch coverage here.

Glade Park: Colorado National Guard will help rebuild Fruita Reservoir No. One

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From the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel (Gary Harmon):

The Guard’s 947th Engineering Company will repair and improve the old earthen dam that holds back snowmelt until it can be turned to use on the fields and pastures down below.

The mission, though, is to do more than revive the old reservoir. The project also will help Fruita preserve its rights to the water stored there and could one day pave the way for a park in the high country overlooking the Grand Valley, Fruita Mayor Ken Henry said…

Work is to be complete by Aug. 9, and the reservoir will be off-limits to the public until the job is done. Soldiers from Grand Junction, Durango and Fort Carson will work to complete the job that officials said would otherwise cost Fruita an estimated $1 million. The job will be done with two complements of 50 or so soldiers each. For one three-day period midway through the project, there will be as many as 110 soldiers working at the site and staying in a bivouac a few hundred yards downstream in the woods. The National Guard will spend about $350,000 on the repair. That’s the same amount it would cost for any training exercise, which the company does once a year anyway, officials said.

At completion, the narrow, sharply sloped dam will be restored and improved with the extension of the back side into a flatter, more stable support structure holding back the reservoir, which can hold back about 140 acre feet of water.

Fruita needed to act soon because it was in danger of losing its water right for failure to put it to beneficial use, Henry said. Fruita, however, had no money to rebuild the dam until the National Guard came along. “We don’t want to compete against contractors for work,” Brock said, so officials chose to work with other government agencies or nonprofit organizations.

More Coyote Gulch coverage here.

Glenwood Springs: U.S. Freestyle Kayaking Team Trials

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Here’s a preview of today’s U.S. Freestyle Kayaking Team Trials — including much praise for Glenwood Spring’s wave feature in the Colorado River — from John Stroud writing for the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. From the article:

“This is one of the best features in the world, and it’s right in my backyard, so I guess I have a little hometown advantage,” [Michael Palmer ] said during a training break at the whitewater park earlier this week. He and [Jason Craig] have become good friends while competing on the world kayaking circuit. Palmer introduced Craig to the new Glenwood Whitewater Park last summer. “I was here for two weeks, just staying and playing in the park,” Craig said. “There’s not an artificial wave feature built anywhere that’s better than the one here,” he said. “There are some amazing opportunities with this wave, because there’s so much water and its taller and more powerful … you can really separate yourself from the water, which opens up the possibilities for tricks.”

Glenwood’s wave is unique because of its location on a major river, just downstream from the confluence with a major tributary, the Roaring Fork River, Palmer explained. Where most whitewater parks are on rivers that peak below 5,000 cubic feet per second, the Colorado River in that location can peak at 17,000 cfs or more stay above 10,000 cfs for several weeks during the spring and early summer. “There are natural features in some places that rival this, but they only come in a couple of days out of the year,” Palmer said. “This one lasts for months, and you can truly paddle it year-round.” For Glenwood to host a competition the caliber of the Team Trials in just the whitewater park’s second year is huge, he said.

More Coyote Gulch coverage here.