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

Snake/Salt Basin Advisory Group
Meeting Record
Afton, Wyoming
August 6, 2001


Facilitator Cathy Lujan opened the meeting at 6:00 p.m. The agenda was reviewed for the meeting and all that were in attendance made introductions. Each participant was given the chance to state his or her name and affiliation. There were approximately 40 people in attendance.

Planning Team Issues

The facilitators passed out name cards with the mission statement and ground rules printed on the back. Along with the name cards, reference notebooks were handed out to all of the BAG members. Participants volunteered to deliver a portion of the books to people that were unable to attend. The remaining books would be mailed out. Jodie Jackson then gave a description of the books and explained that additional information would be given to the BAG members during the various BAG meetings for insertion in the notebooks.

The following schedule was agreed on for the next three Snake-Salt BAG meetings:

Monday, October 8, 2001 - Jackson
Monday, December 10, 2001 - Alpine
Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - Afton

The times will remain the same for the meetings, 6 - 9 p.m.

Update BAG Membership

The question was brought up if there needed to be anything done to the BAG membership as it presently exists. It was discussed that maybe there should be some Idaho representation. A couple stated that they owned and operated a ranch that extended over into Idaho. Another suggestion was made that residents from the Alta area may wish to participate. Additional nominations were then solicited and will be followed up by state staff. It was also discussed that a list of all of the Snake-Salt BAG members would be provided at the next meeting.

Review of Issues Identification

The facilitators directed the attention of the BAG members to the issues that were identified at the last meeting. It was asked if there were any changes that needed to be made or any areas that did not appear to be covered. No comments were made at this time. However, it was explained this list was a work in progress and that things could be added or taken off at anytime. One BAG member indicated that she would like to discuss an additional issue at the next meeting.

Consultant Update - Sunrise Engineering

Brad Jorgensen gave the consultant update. It was explained that the preliminary stages of this project consist of the gathering of existing data. Linda Williams of Boyle Engineering, while here in the area, will be in the field with Sunrise Engineering and some of the State Engineer's Office hydrographer commissioners for both the Snake and the Salt basins, in an effort to become better familiarized with the area. It was explained that Sunrise Engineering was able to attend their first basin consultants meeting in Cheyenne with the Wyoming Water Development Commission during the previous month. These meetings will assist the consultants and ensure consistency with the plans being developed for the states' other river basins.

Hydrologic Modeling - Linda Williams, Boyle Engineering

Linda discussed the modeling portion of the project that Boyle Engineering will be involved in. Steps to create this model were discussed as follows:

It was explained that this model would be used to assist in the future planning process for this basin study. Linda's PowerPoint presentation will be made available online through the water planning website at HERE

Hydrologic Impacts of Improved Irrigation Efficiencies - Brian Venn, UW Department of Civil & Architectural Engineering

Brian was able to present findings from a study that he was involved in regarding hydrologic impacts of improved irrigation efficiencies in the Salt River Basin. The change to sprinklers was determined to be a positive change for the irrigators. However, groundwater tables decreased due to the lack of flood irrigation that is attributed to recharging of the groundwater table. Copies of his PowerPoint presentation were also to be made available online HERE

A question was asked if the Wyoming Game & Fish had any information on how sprinkler versus flood irrigation has effected fish populations. A respondent stated that with this change to sprinkler irrigation, there was more water flowing in the river in the months of May and June and less in the months of July and August. The Wyoming Game & Fish will be invited to make a presentation on the fisheries of both the Snake and Salt River Basins in the upcoming months.

Snake River Compact and Water Law - Sue Lowry, SEO

Sue was able to present some of the State Engineer's Office responsibilities with regards to the administration of the waters in the state, including:

Specific examples were given with regards to how junior and senior water rights are administered. Other discussions included the topics of instream flow rights, conservation efforts and the Snake River Compact. Sue's PowerPoint presentation was made available to all those in attendance in a hard copy format, and will be placed online as well HERE.

The meeting adjourned at 9 p.m.