Wyoming State Water Plan, Wyoming Water Development Office
Rafting on Snake River Lake Marie, Snowy Mountains Wyoming Wind River Range picture

Platte River Basin Advisory Group
Meeting Record
Torrington, WY
April 13, 2004

Facilitator Sherri Gregory welcomed the group and called the meeting to order. Sherri asked the people in attendance to introduce themselves, and she reviewed the meeting agenda, a copy of which is attached. A sign-in sheet was passed around to record attendance.

Planning Team Issues
River Basin Planning Update:
Barry Lawrence, WWDC, provided an update regarding the other six BAGs, all of which had met within a short time prior to this meeting. He noted that Jan Curtis, Wyoming State Climatologist, and Dave Taylor, U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service, had attended other BAG meetings to provide, respectively, information regarding the ongoing drought and the snow gauging program in Wyoming. Other topics discussed at other BAG meetings included:

Bear River BAG:

Green River BAG: Snake/Salt River BAG: Wind/Big Horn River BAG: Powder/Tongue River BAG: NE Basin BAG: Legislative Update: John Jackson, WWDC, provided a legislative update. He stated that, during the 2004 legislative session, 33 WWDC planning projects were approved. He then noted that 9 of the 33 new planning projects as well as 7 pending WWDC construction projects are located in the Platte River Basin, including:

Platte River Basin WWDC planning projects:
State water research$ 200,000
Albin well and water supply$ 140,000
Cheyenne Belvoir Ranch$ 350,000
Encampment Sierra Madre well$ 250,000
Glenrock well and tank$ 600,000
Pine Bluffs Lance/Fox Hills well$ 475,000
Saratoga test well$ 160,000
Wagoner/Cherokee ID Phase 2$ 35,000
Weather modification (upper North Platte Basin)$ 100,000
Total planning amount:$2,310,000
Platte River Basin WWDC construction projects:
Albin pipeline and well rehabilitation (50% grant only)$ 215,000
Casper raw water project (50% grant only)$ 452,500
Casper Alcova rehabilitation (50% grant only)$ 595,000
Glenrock Sunup Ridge tank and well (50% grant only)$ 132,750
Guernsey tank and pipeline (50% grant only)$ 615,000
Lake Hattie dam rehabilitation$ 163,000
Saratoga standpipe rehabilitation (50% grant only)$ 200,000
Total construction amount:$2,373,250
Mr. Jackson also noted that the legislature amended the Small Water Development Projects Program to allow inclusion of irrigation projects and to raise the previous $50,000 maximum project cost to $100,000. Overall program funding was increased from $1,000,000 to $2,500,000, with funding divided evenly between development and rehabilitation projects. The WWDC.s maximum contribution to any one Small Water Development Project will remain at $25,000.

Consultant Update
Joel Farber of TriHydro Corporation provided an overview of and projected draft example pages from the project Educational Tool. He stated that the draft web-based Educational Tool had been prepared on the basis of two goals:

Following a brief demonstration of draft Educational Tool pages, Mr. Farber stated that his goal during this BAG meeting was to develop a BAG consensus regarding basic Educational Tool organization. He noted that the Platte River Basin Plan Educational Tool would be the first basin plan product of its type since previous basin plans did not include an Educational Tool.

Discussion regarding inclusion and organization of Educational Tool links to other web sites ensued. Mr. Farber noted that the intent was to provide an Educational Tool that would require relatively little modification over time while including in the Educational Tool links to other sites that will be updated continuously over time. He also noted the importance of including a manageable number of links in the Educational Tool.

BAG members asked and Mr. Farber responded to several questions regarding the proposed Educational Tool. Questions related to a variety of topics, including:

Mr. Farber noted that the Educational Tool will be designed to strike a reasonable balance regarding the amount and detail of information that will be included in the tool. Following expressions of concern by some BAG members regarding accessing the Educational Tool via slow speed internet connection, Mr. Farber proposed that preparing and posting a pilot Educational Tool, accessible to BAG members before completing and posting the final Educational Tool, may be a reasonable approach to assessing future public access to the Educational Tool.

Mr. Farber then presented an Educational Tool schematic and obtained general BAG consensus regarding:

Following Mr. Farber.s presentation, the BAG took a short break.

Issues Identification
Cards listing 14 basic topics pertaining to Platte River Basin water issues that BAG members had identified previously were posted by the Facilitator on the meeting room wall. BAG members were asked to provide additional cards identifying specific issues under the topic cards that they believed to be important and worthy of further consideration. Following posting of BAG-generated issue cards, the BAG reviewed all of the cards, clarifying some and eliminating repetitive cards. A list of the 14 topic cards and individual issue card topics is attached to this meeting record. Fundamental basin water plan issues were identified during BAG discussion, including:

Issues identified were:
AgricultureFederal involvement / regulations / lawsuitsDownstream claims / compacts / decreesDisaster & emergency response contingency (drought mitigation, flood control)Economic developmentGroundwaterIndustrial/manufacturing / minerals extractionMunicipal / domesticNon-consumptive issues (instream flows, wetlands, ecosystem integrity, habitat, etc.)RecreationWater conservation and reuseWater developmentWater qualityWater rights, water law, prior appropriation doctrine The BAG adjourned shortly before 1:00 pm following discussion regarding issues identification.

The next Platte River Basin Advisory Group Meeting is scheduled for 10:00 am on June 8, 2004 at the public library in Laramie. A pig roast for BAG members at TriHydro.s new West Laramie headquarters will follow the meeting.