Hello from CWCB Acting Director, Lauren Ris
Thank you for taking the time to read CWCB's Confluence Newsletter - there is a lot we are excited to tell you about! I am honored to serve as the Acting Director for CWCB. The hardworking CWCB staff make it a pleasure. The search process is underway for a new permanent Director and we are hopeful to have that position filled early this summer. In the meantime, please let me know how I can serve you in the water community.
"The Watershed Management Planning Group (WMPG)'s mission is to develop a watershed management plan that will help protect existing water uses and watershed health in the Upper Gunnison Basin in the face of pressure from increased water demands and permanent reductions in water supply." - John McClow
CWCB Projects Bill Approved and Signed By Governor Hickenlooper
The General Assembly approved the CWCB Water Projects Bill, which provides $164 million for implementation of Colorado’s Water Plan, water storage, watershed health, flood control programs, monitoring of streams, water supply forecasting, Federal cost sharing grants, preserving agriculture, feasibility studies, water loss control methodology training, and other programs and projects. Included in this, is $30 million for a Loan Guarantee Fund that will provide financing options for regional project participants.
This also includes $25M for Water Plan Implementation Funding, which breaks down into $10M for WSRF supplemental funding; $5M for the Watershed Restoration Grant Program; and $10M for Water Plan Implementation Grants/Funding. Read more about it in the May Implementation Fact Sheet.
Interbasin Compact Committee (IBCC)
The IBCC met on April 20th in Keystone. IBCC members debriefed from their Ag Water Summit held in conjunction with the Colorado Ag Water Alliance last November and discussed related next steps to foster the implementation of successful Alternative Transfer Methods (ATMs). A number of recommendations for implementing ATMs that grew out of the Ag Water Summit are included in the Colorado Water Institute report. The meeting also included updates on the Colorado River Risk Study, the Statewide Water Supply Initiative Update, and the CWCB Projects Bill. In addition, IBCC members continued to examine various options for funding the implementation of Colorado’s Water Plan and the appropriate role of the IBCC in this process. Members were encouraged to discuss further involvement related to funding options with their roundtables.
TAP-IN is a platform to support water innovation in Colorado. TAP-IN will host three“reverse pitch” innovation challenges in 2017 that link water users with problems to entrepreneurs who can partner to solve them, with the goal of building connections across communities to unleash the power of Coloradans collaborating.
Water innovation hits the nexus of agriculture, energy, bioscience, transportation, manufacturing, public health, outdoor recreation and tourism, business, and education - all the key pillars of our thriving economy, environment, and society. There is tremendous potential for partnership and collaboration among groups that have never interacted before, resulting in game-changing solutions. And, there is untapped potential to connect the entrepreneurial community to these open markets prime for entrepreneurial solutions.
The first reverse pitch is June 21 in Denver and will focus on Source & Cycle. The CWCB, Open Water Foundation, Denver Water, Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT), and Colorado State University invite you to join TAP-IN. Learn more.
A LITTLE MORE BEFORE YOU RUNOFF
South Platte & Metro Basin Roundtable Update
Casey Davenhill, Public Education, Participation, and Outreach (PEPO) Liaison for the South Platte & Metro Basin Roundtables, gives an update on education, funding, other efforts of the roundtables. Read more.
Denver Botanic Gardens Lecture & Workshop Series Focuses on Water
Throughout the 2017 series, the Denver Botanic Gardens will explore the importance of water through the lens of art, conservation, home ownership, and gardening. The lecture series includes topics such as enhancing the abundance of water throughout the world, rock gardening, and water quality of the Colorado River through underwater photography. Upcoming events include: May 25 with Joseph Tychonievich - Rock Gardening; June 17 - Water-wise Garden Tour; and June 23- Home and Garden Habitat Hero Tour. Engage with your water!
Chatfield Storage Reallocation Project Open House
The Chatfield Reservoir Mitigation Company (CRMC) is holding an Open House Tuesday, May 30 from 5:00-7:30PM for the public to see final designs for the recreational modification and environmental mitigation projects that will be undertaken at Chatfield State Park. CRMC engineering and design consultants will be in attendance to provide information and answer questions about the projects that will be undertaken as part of the Chatfield Storage Reallocation Project. The Department of Natural Resources is the Chatfield Storage Reallocation Project's non-federal sponsor. In addition, the CWCB and Colorado Parks and Wildlife have representatives on the CRMC Board. Learn more.
Make a Splash at 17th Annual Float Fest
The Western Slope Conservation Center is hosting the 17th Annual Float Fest on Saturday, June 3rd, 2017! The Float Fest helps raise funds for their watershed work, and is a unique way to learn about the North Fork of the Gunnison River. There is also a free festival for the community with live music, a silent auction, games, vendors, and more. Join them!
Watershed Summit June 29
The Watershed Summit is a one-day event for water industry leaders including water utility executives, business leaders, conservation experts, and other professionals. The goal is to share new insights and initiatives, and connect attendees to industry leaders and what works best across the Mountain West. Don't miss it.
Call for Abstracts: Upper Colorado River Basin Water Forum
The 7th annual Upper Colorado River Basin Water Forum will be held Nov 1-2 at Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction. The organizers are seeking presenters from across the water community who can tell stories that illuminate the challenges and complexities involved in trying to understand Upper Colorado River Basin water issues and manage water in new ways. Abstracts are due June 30.Learn more!