Animas-La Plata Project: Sponsors are keeping operations and maintenance in-house

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From The Durango Herald (Dale Rodebaugh):

An association created by the sponsors signed a contract Dec. 30, 2009, with the Bureau of Reclamation, which owns the project facilities. The project, which will provide water for three Native American tribes and other entities, consists of a man-made reservoir in Ridges Basin southwest of Bodo Park, a pumping station on the Animas River and a water-distribution system in New Mexico.

Project sponsors are the Colorado Water Resources and Power Development Authority, the La Plata Water Conservancy District, the Navajo Nation and the San Juan Water Commission, all of New Mexico, and the Southern Ute Indian Tribe and Ute Mountain Ute Indian Tribe…

Pat Page at the Bureau of Reclamation said Russ How-ard, maintenance manager for the Central Arizona Project, has been hired as general manager to oversee A-LP operations and maintenance. Howard will have a staff and will answer to the Animas-La Plata Operations, Maintenance and Replacement Association on which all partners will have representation…

All A-LP water is for household or industrial use. Water earmarked for agriculture was deleted when the project was downsized in 2000. The Colorado Water Resources and Power Development Authority’s share in the A-LP is being held for the Animas La Plata Water Conservancy District, which in turn will provide water for the city of Durango and the La Plata West Water Authority. The latter would supply water to the dry southwest corner of La Plata County…

After test runs, filling the reservoir began in earnest on May 4, 2009. The lake is about 20 percent full…

It hasn’t been determined who will develop recreation at Lake Nighthorse. The Animas La Plata Water Conservancy District is negotiating with a consultant on a recreation master plan but has almost no money to carry the project forward.

More Animas River watershed coverage here and here.

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