Click here to read the newsletter. Here’s an excerpt:
What you missed at the CWCB July Board meeting in Steamboat Springs…
Our newest Board member, Jim Yahn, was sworn in to represent the South Platte River Basin. Jim is the manager of the North Sterling and Prewitt Reservoirs where he oversees the diversion and distribution of water to over 350 farmers. Carlee Brown attended her first Board meeting as the new Section Chief for the Interstate, Federal, and Water Information Section. Previously, Carlee was the Policy Advisor for water at the Western Governors’ Association (WGA), where she led WGA’s bipartisan efforts on drought, the Clean Water Act, water data, and groundwater.
The implementation of Colorado’s Water Plan is in full swing. Some highlights:
Distributed over $5M in WSRF funds from statewide and basin accounts since the beginning of November 2015. This $5m has been successfully leveraged against over $25M in matching contributions. CWCB staff are working with other stakeholders to provide water loss trainings statewide over the next few years. These trainings will update water managers on proper water loss reporting and accounting. A LEAN event was held between the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Colorado Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB), and local regulators, such as the Northwest Council of Governments (NWCOG) to improve the efficiency of the permitting process. Water providers and environmental groups were also involved. Stakeholders are creating a Permitting Handbook.
The CWCB Board and staff have developed a creative funding plan for up to five years, in its conception phase, that proposes:
$50 million one-time investment in a repayment guarantee fund $10 million annually to the WSRF $5 million annually to the Watershed Restoration Program $10 million annually to non-reimbursable programs The Non Native Fish Subcommittee is working to reduce non native fish populations through education, outreach, and harvest incentives. In the Ridgway Reservoir, the Smallmouth Bass adult population has been reduced by 36 percent. Instream flow water rights have been decreed on Alkali Creek, Armstrong Creek, Brush Creek, East Douglas Creek, Schaefer Creek, Terror Creek, and Timber Springs Gulch, totaling 22 miles in length. The Board approved a loan to the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District for the Pueblo Dam Hydroelectric Project. This is the first phase of the Arkansas Valley Conduit project, which was a part of the original Fryingpan-Arkansas project signed by President Kennedy in 1962. The Board also approved a loan to the North Poudre Irrigation Company for rehabilitation of the Livermore Irrigation Tunnel. This project will help to ensure continued deliveries to more than 36 square miles of irrigated acreage. The Board approved seven WSRF grants at this meeting, totaling $270,572.