River District Board Approves Over $1.6 Million in Water Project Grants

Morning AgClips (April 19th, 2024)—On Wednesday, April 17, the Colorado River District Board of Directors approved over $1.6 million in funding for eight water projects across the Western Slope. Including these approvals, the Community Funding Partnership (CFP) program will close out the first quarter of 2024 with 14 successful grant requests totaling over $2 million.

“This quarter, we presented a slate of projects which represent the diverse needs of water users across our district,” said Amy Moyer, Director of Strategic Partnerships. “All sectors across the West Slope are looking at strategies to adapt in a hotter, drier climate. These projects are examples of the innovation, ingenuity, and perseverance required to respond to these growing pressures.”

The grants approved by the board on Wednesday will provide funding for a wide array of projects including: municipal-level support to develop land-use policies that integrate resilient water resource management; ongoing research on the occurrence of algae in Blue Mesa Reservoir; habitat restoration along the Blue River; emergency funding to repair an irrigation ditch serving producers on the Crystal River; permitting and analysis of storage on the White River; four agriculture projects in the Upper Gunnison River Basin; diversion structure upgrades on the Little Snake River; and strategic water releases from Elkhead and Stagecoach Reservoirs to help maintain streamflow in the Yampa River.

The Community Funding Partnership program, now in its fourth year, is governed by policies which require successful applicants to demonstrate how their project serves multiple beneficiaries across a region or watershed. Multi-benefit categories include productive agriculture, infrastructure, healthy rivers, watershed health, and conservation and efficiency. More information can be found at www.coloradoriverdistrict.org/community-funding-partnership/.

The eight projects approved by the board on April 17th are listed below. Detailed project descriptions and staff recommendations are available in the public meeting packet HERE.

West Slope Growing Water Smart
Applicant: The Sonoran Institute
Total Approved: $98,426

Blue River Habitat Restoration Project
Applicant: Blue River Watershed Group
Total Approved: $150,000
Summit County

East Mesa Ditch Emergency Repairs
Applicant: East Mesa Water Company
Total Approved: $207,500
Pitkin and Garfield Counties

Little Snake River Diversion Structure Rehabilitation Project
Applicant: Pothook Water Conservancy District
Total Approved: $250,000
Moffat and Routt Counties

Wolf Creek Reservoir Project
Applicant: Rio Blanco Water Conservancy District
Total Approved: $550,000
Rio Blanco and Moffat Counties

Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District Agriculture Bundled Project
Applicant: Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District
Total Approved: $114,400
Gunnison and Saguache Counties

Blue Mesa Harmful Algal Bloom Study – Phase II
Applicant: Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District
Total Approved: $35,004
Gunnison County

Yampa River Reservoir Release Program
Applicant: Colorado Water Trust
Total Approved: $218,585.57
Routt and Moffat Counties

-Colorado River District

Morning AgClips
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