CURTIS, Nebraska -- The Middle Republican NRD Board of Directors approved (7-4) a 60-inch, five-year ground water irrigation allocation at Tuesday night's board meeting after hearing or receiving written testimony from 10 individuals at the 4:30 p.m. public hearing in McCook.
The newly adopted, revised rules and regulations provide for an allocation similar to what is currently in place which expires at the end of this year. The new allocation provides for 60 inches of water over five years with a base allocation of 12 inches for any given year beginning with the 2013 irrigation season.
In the event of a Compact Call Year, the above allocations could become more restrictive with a public hearing.
Other revisions to the Rules & Regulations adopted at last night's meeting included changes to Supplemental Well acres; Compact Call Year Response and; Certification of non use. Additional revisions were made to the Rules & Regulations during the April 2012 Board Meeting. All revisions become effective August 1, 2012 and are avaible for viewing or downloading at www.mrnrd.org
More specifically, several definitions were added to the rules as needed to address compact call year and allocation provisions. Revisions to the sections on Certification, Recertification and Decertification of uses were approved. A section for Compact Call Year was added and a rule was added to require that the installation of all flow meters meets district standards for the 2013 crop year.
Additionally, rules were revised dealing with transfers. Previous provisions for Transfer of Use and the Permanent Transfer of a Well were removed. Additional conditions and restrictions were placed on the source and destination of the Permanent Transfer of Acres. Allocations for all sub areas were revised and are now referenced in Appendix 1. New provisions were added for the certification of non irrigation status and the combined allocation to acres certified to supplemental wells.
The Rules and Regulations for the Ground Water Management Area were first adopted on May 18, 1998 and were last revised on March 16, 2009. The Integrated Management Plan was first adopted on November 9, 2004 and was last revised on November 1, 2010.
The entire rules and regulations, public notice and the official order can be viewed on the District's website at www.mrnrd.org
During the financial report, Dan Smith, General Manager, reported that the 2007 Occupation Tax is now fully paid. No foreclosures resulted. This tax is used to fund projects and programs that help the District stay in compliance with the Integrated Management Plan. The Riverside Irrigation Co. purchase is one such project.
The Frenchman Valley Irrigation District Manager Don Felker spoke before the Board last night providing canal flow information that may help the board decide on an intentional aquifer recharge project agreement that would benefit two surface water districts and further help the NRD district move towards conjunctive management of water supplies. Such a project might include as many as 20,000 acres.
During a variance Public Hearing, the board denied a variance request from O'Neil Cattle Co. The Cattle Co. was requesting 35.2 acres be added to their current certified acres.
Under the Acres Retirement Program the board approved the purchase of 47.4 ground water acres adjacent to the Riverside Irrigation Co. service area. Zapp Farms also owned acres within the Riverside Irrigation Company in Hitchcock Co. The purchase of these acres completes the District's original work with the Riverside Irrigation Co. purchase.
Jason Kennedy, District Conservationist with the NRCS, spoke to the board about a proposed remedy to address a significant erosion problem on a property in Hitchcock Co. The remedy was born out of an erosion and sediment complaint. The proposed remedy involves terracing the uplands of four adjoining properties surrounding the area that is being washed out. The terracing would slow and limit runoff into the low lying area, preventing further erosion. District dollars will be made available to supplement federal dollars to fund the project.
The Middle Republican Natural Resources District protects lives, property and the future of this district through a wide range of stewardship, management and education programs--from flood control to groundwater monitoring, from irrigation management to outdoor recreation and more. Activities and projects of NRD's are reviewed and approved by a locally elected board of directors. There are 23 natural resources districts across the state. For more information, visit www.mrnrd.org.