News and Information
 Water Planning Process History
 Historical Planning Documents
 Wyoming Water Facts

River Basin Plans
 Statewide Products
 Bear River Basin
 Green River Basin
 NE River Basin
 Platte River Basin
 Powder/Tongue River Basin
 Snake/Salt River Basin
 Wind/Bighorn River Basin
 Groundwater Reports

Basin Advisory Groups
 Mission and Purpose
 Meeting Records
 Reference Material

Planning Products
 GIS Web Mapping
 Framework Water Plan
 Platte Water Atlas
 Water Search Engine
 Send Us Your Comments

 State Engineer's Office
 Water Resources Data System

Contact Us

Water Plan Home Page

Water Development Office

Bear River Basin Advisory Group
Organizational Meeting
Weston Inn, Evanston, WY
January 27, 1998

The Wyoming Water Development Commission and the Wyoming State Engineer's Office co-sponsored an organizational meeting for the Bear River Basin Advisory Group on January 27, 1998, in Evanston Wyoming. Nearly 80 people attended the meeting from various parts of the Basin representing a number of local, state and federal agencies, agriculture, water users, industry and conservation interests.

Evan Green of the WWDC opened the meeting with an explanation of the water planning process including the authorization of the feasibility study and the selection of the Bear River Basin as a pilot project. Goals and objectives of the state wide planning process were explained as were the role of citizen advisory groups to assist with the development of the plans. The purpose and approach of the feasibility study were discussed and the statutory role of the WWDC and SEO were outlined for participants.

The facilitator explained the use of advisory groups and public involvement in development of the plan. People were challenged to evaluate the following issues identified in the Water Planning Questionnaire as they related to management of water resources in the Bear River Basin and also for assembling an Advisory Group of 12-15 individuals to assist with development of a plan:

  • Agriculture
  • Ground Water
  • Economic Development
  • Downstream Claims
  • Water Quality
  • Municipal and Domestic Uses
  • Water Conservation and Reuse
  • Water Rights, Law, Prior Appropriation Doctrine, Transfers, and Reserved Rights
  • Non-Consumptive Uses
  • Water Development
  • Federal Involvement, Regulations, Lawsuits
  • Recreation
  • Industrial, Mineral and Manufacturing Uses
  • Disaster and Emergency Planning

Participants generally agreed that all issues identified in the questionnaire were applicable to the Bear River Basin. They also very quickly generated additional issues that could be placed within the context of a comprehensive plan. Specifically, these issues were identified as:

  • Population Growth Impacts on Water Demands
  • Other Influences, e.g., Zoning, Riparian Habitats, Wetlands, etc.
  • Plan Should Not Conflict With Other Jurisdictions (County, Municipal)
  • The Plan Should Define the Level of Impacts From Existing Uses
  • Define Economic Development That Will Be Evaluated
  • Agriculture, Economic Development and Ground Water Issues Should Be Evaluated Together
  • Recognize Other Committed Uses of Bear River Water Including Existing Water Rights and Additional Storage Needs
  • Address How the Plan Can Be Modified In the Future
  • Address Who Can Change the Plan
  • Describe the Legislative Prerogatives For Participants and Other Publics
  • The Plan Must Protect Existing Water Rights
  • Describe Existing Constraints That Will Limit the Basin Plan's Effectiveness, e.g., Different Formats Between States, Lack of Data, Poor Records, etc.

After discussing the above issues, participants were then asked to identify agency representatives, publics, special interests and others who could be assembled as an Advisory Group to address these issues within the Bear River Basin Plan. Some disagreement surfaced regarding state and federal agency participation. It was generally accepted that these persons would be invited to Advisory Group meetings on an "as needed" basis to provide information and clarification on technical issues. Additionally, the participants believed that there should be equal representation from both Lincoln and Uinta Counties to provide a basin wide perspective. Participants then agreed that representation on Advisory Group could be categorized as follows:

  • Users
    • Agricultural
    • Municipal
    • Industrial
    • Recreational
  • Political
    • City
    • County
    • State
  • Advisory (Agency Representatives)
  • Bear River Task Force
  • Conservation Districts
  • Bear River Compact
  • Environmental
  • Educational

As participants began to suggest the make up of the Advisory Group, education was eliminated in the belief that all interests could adequately represent the areas youth. Representation on the Advisory Group was determined to be based on the following affiliations and interests:

  • Agriculture (3) from the upper, middle and lower basins.
  • Mayors (2) from the cities of Evanston and Cokeville.
  • County Commissioners (2) from Lincoln and Uinta Counties.
  • Industry (1)
  • Recreation (1)
  • Bear River Task Force (1)
  • Conservation Districts (2)
  • Bear River Compact (2)
  • Environmental Organizations (1)

Participants also agreed that the Advisory Group could add additional members to recognize as broad an array of interests as possible. Adding other members will be decided at the next meeting. The Planning Team from the WWDC and SEO will continue to serve as ex-officio members of the Advisory Group and provide expertise, guidance and administrative support.

Specific individuals were selected from those present and other members were suggested to be contacted. Individuals who have currently agreed to commit the time, interest, and participation as members of the advisory group include:

  1. Allan Burton, Mayor - City of Cokeville, Cokeville, WY,
    • Cokeville Municipality
  2. Dennis Cornelison, Uinta County CD, Evanston, WY,
    • Uinta Co. CD
  3. Allen Cowardin, WY State Parks, Evanston, WY,
    • Recreation
  4. James Crompton, Bear River Commissioner, Evanston, WY,
    • Bear River Compact (South)
  5. Will Davis, Mayor - City of Evanston, Evanston, WY,
    • Evanston Municipality
  6. Kathy Davison, Lincoln Co. Commissioner, Kemmerer, WY,
    • Lincoln Co.
  7. Eric Esterholdt, Lincoln CD, Cokeville, WY,
    • Lincoln CD
  8. Eric Heltzel, Trout Unlimited, Evanston, WY,
    • Environmental
  9. Truman Julian, Wyoming Woolgrowers , Kemmerer, WY,
    • Agriculture (North)
  10. Craig Lowham, Farm Federation, Evanston, WY,
    • Agriculture (South)
  11. Aaron Martin, Uinta Co. Commissioner, Evanston, WY,
    • Uinta Co.
  12. Gordon L. Park, Bear River Inc., Evanston, WY,
    • Industry
  13. Hight Proffit, Western WY RC&D, Evanston, WY,
    • Water Quality Task Force (RC&D)
  14. Mike Sims, Sims Land and Livestock, Evanston, WY,
    • Agriculture (Central)
  15. John Teichert, Bear River Commissioner, Cokeville, WY,
    • Bear River Compact (North)

The Advisory Group will meet an additional seven times over the next few months. Participants agreed that the meetings should be open to all interested persons and that the meetings should rotate between Evanston and Cokeville to encourage participation. The next meeting was scheduled for March 11, 1998 in Evanston. The meeting will be held at the Weston Inn beginning at 7:00 p.m.

   Citizen    Government    Business    Visitor   Privacy Policy