Arkansas Valley Super Ditch: The Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District board agrees to form a committee to look at how winter water fits in the project

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From The Pueblo Chieftain (Chris Woodka):

The Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District agreed to coordinate formation of the committee at its meeting Thursday, as part of a $225,000 grant request for the Lower Arkansas Valley Water Conservancy District on behalf of the Super Ditch. The grant was approved last week by the Arkansas Basin Roundtable, which forwarded it to the Colorado Water Conservation Board. It will be accompanied by a letter of dissent from roundtable member Dan Henrichs, superintendent of the High Line Canal.

Henrichs and some others on the roundtable objected to the grant because the Super Ditch exchange application is in Water Court and the information could be used in the case. Jay Winner, general manager of the Lower Ark district, said the information would be available for anyone to use, and most roundtable members agreed that it is better to know how agricultural water can be quantified for exchange, storage and transfer.

Winter water is just one piece of the grant. The program was established by a court decree to allow irrigators to store water from Nov. 15 to March 15 each year. Water can be used later in the growing season, when flows are typically diminished…

[Southeastern Executive Director Jim Broderick] said the Division of Water Resources, Southeastern, the Bureau of Reclamation and winter water participants need to meet to see how using winter water in programs like Super Ditch that sell water through lease agreements. Henrichs was on hand to make sure winter water interests are included. “We have to work out winter water before it’s put out before the whole world and becomes a battle,” Broderick said. “We want the process to be inclusive.”

More Arkansas Valley Super Ditch coverage here and here.

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