Wiggins: Industrial Facilities, Inc. hired to perform levee recertification work

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From The Fort Morgan Times (Dan Barker):

FEMA is asking that all levees be recertified in the wake of the disaster which happened in New Orleans with Hurricane Katrina, and this is the next step for Wiggins…

Holbrook said that certifying the levee will mean doing spot checking of the structure, but one of the first steps is to meet with FEMA representatives to determine exactly how they want it done.

More Wiggins coverage here.

Fort Morgan: Stormwater issues meeting May 25

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From The Fort Morgan Times:

The city will hold a neighborhood meeting next week to tell residents about some of the findings and possible alternatives for the Northwest Quadrant storm drainage problems. The meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 25, at the Fort Morgan School District Support Center, 715 W. Platte Ave. City officials and representatives from the engineering firm Short Elliott Hendrickson will be there to share the findings of the detailed study and analyses, as well as possible/feasible options in moving forward.

More Morgan County coverage here.

Northern Integrated Supply Project: The Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry backs Northern Water’s proposed project

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Here’s the release from Northern Water (Brian Werner):

The Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry (CACI), the state chamber of commerce, today announced its endorsement of the Northern Integrated Supply Project (NISP) as an essential project for the economy of the Northern Front Range. CACI President Chuck Berry said that the CACI Executive Committee agreed to support the building of NISP at its April meeting.

“An adequate, reliable supply of water is essential for economic development and quality of life of residents of Northern Colorado,” Berry said, adding that NISP will be a major economic development opportunity for Northern Colorado and will result in more than $450 million in construction projects.

NISP will provide 40,000 acre feet of water annually to 15 municipalities and water districts representing more than 200,000 residents in Northern Colorado.

The CACI endorsement comes as NISP business supporters, chamber of commerce members and public officials gather May 19 to show their support for the project. The Water, Jobs and the Economy rally will be from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Larimer County Fairgrounds and Events Complex at The Ranch in Loveland.

CACI joins Club 20, the Western Slope’s leading business advocacy organization in endorsing NISP. Club 20 endorsed NISP in September 2010. More than 15 area and statewide business organizations have now endorsed NISP as critical for the Northern Colorado economy, including the following:

Berthoud Area Chamber of Commerce
Carbon Valley Chamber of Commerce
Club 20
Colorado Association of Commerce & Industry
Evans Chamber of Commerce
Fort Collins Board of Realtors
Fort Lupton Chamber of Commerce
Greeley Chamber of Commerce
Lafayette Chamber of Commerce

Longmont Chamber of Commerce
Mead Area Chamber of Commerce
Progressive 15
United Power
Upstate Colorado
Weld Community Development Group
Weld County Builders Association
Windsor Chamber of Commerce

CACI was created in the mid-1960s when Colorado’s business leaders merged the Colorado Chamber of Commerce with the Colorado Manufacturing Association. About 435 companies, local chambers of commerce, trade associations and local economic development organizations belong to CACI. CACI’s mission is to champion a healthy business environment. To achieve this mission, CACI has key four objectives: (1) maintain and improve the cost of doing business; (2) advocate a pro-business state government; (3) increase the quantity of educated, skilled workers; and (4) strengthen Colorado’s critical infrastructure (roads, water, telecommunications and energy).

More Northern Integrated Supply Project coverage here and here.

Rafters gearing up for what could be an ‘epic’ rafting season

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From the Aspen Daily News (Dorothy M. Atkins):

The cold temperatures and large amounts of precipitation that have been plaguing Aspenites through the off-season have assured many rafters that the Roaring Fork River will have plenty of snowpack to pull from to maintain river flow well into the summer…

The Fork is fueled by snowmelt from snowpack located up Independence Pass. The gauging station located on Independence Pass is reporting 21.6 inches, — 159 percent of average snowpack — according to the Roaring Fork Conservancy…

This year with more snowpack and colder temperatures, the hope is that the Fork will remain navigable through August…

“I hate to say I have any expectations, because who knows what will happen,” said raft guide Casey Vandenbroek. “I would be so stoked to be on Slaughterhouse until mid August, and I feel like we have enough snow if we just get a nice steady melt.”

A nice steady melt is what everyone is hoping for this year.

From The Greeley Tribune (Dan England):

This season, boaters expect water levels may even surpass that 1983 record of just under 6,000 cubic feet per second. Those are water levels that bring elation from experienced boaters, concern from law enforcement and rescue personnel and a mix of the two from rafting companies…

The only thing for certain is the water should be higher than it’s been in years, and it will probably be a few weeks before boaters really see it. Even if it does warm up in a hurry, said Bell, a kayaker and atmospheric scientist, it takes a while to start the melt with such a deep snowpack, which could mean a peak later in June.

More whitewater coverage here.

Steamboat Springs: Flooding in 1984 and a look ahead for 2011

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From Steamboat Today (Tom Ross):

Winter 1983-84 was the season of 40 consecutive days and nights of heavy snow, and the ski season ended with 447.5 inches of the white stuff. And like it has in spring 2011, the snow kept on coming into May. All heck broke loose in the third week in May when the temperatures jumped into the 80s and a summer shower fell on top of the rotten snowpack. Butcherknife Creek flooded backyards in Old Town, and city officials were constantly checking the old Ninth Street footbridge over the Yampa River. On about May 24, the water was within inches of the old bridge, and the river peaked the next day at 5,670 cubic feet per second…

I’m not predicting a 30-foot wall of water this runoff season, but it might be wise to take some precautions. Personally, I’m keeping my irrigation boots and my chest waders in the back of the vehicle for the rest of spring. Jay Wetzler, owner and operator of the Steamboat Hotel on the city’s south side, bought flood insurance last month to protect his property from the possibility that either Walton Creek or the Yampa River might show up this month for a repeat performance. “It was expensive, but we’ve seen so much development in the floodplain, there’s no way to tell what’s going to happen,” he said.