Notice of Scoping Meeting for Lower Gunnison Supplemental Watershed Plan

You are invited to attend a public scoping open house where your input is requested to define potential watershed actions to improve irrigation water use in the Lower Gunnison River Basin. The range of natural resource conservation measures and water efficiency improvements and project alternatives will be presented and discussed, including but not limited to, practices and projects that increase water conservation, water quality improvements, enhancement of aquatic species habitat, soil health and mitigation of public safety risks (e.g., flooding) while supporting and improving existing agricultural land use.

Potential effects to the human and natural environment as a result of this project could include: Changes to historic ditches and irrigation structures; change or loss of wetland vegetation and wildlife habitat along open water; ground disturbance and changes in invasive or noxious weed pressure.

 

Public Scoping Open House

Date / Time:  June 15, Monday, 6:00 PM -7:00 PM

Time/Location:  Due to county and state limitations related to COVID-19, this meeting will be held remotely computer webinar; however, project managers planners will be available for one on one conversations till 8:00 pm.  Please call (970) 872-3020 to set up an appointment and for additional information.

Registration:  Register for the webinar by emailing Cassandra Shenk (cshenk@eroresources.com), or calling (970) 872-3020.

 

Background: The United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS), with assistance of the Colorado River District (River District) and ERO Resources Corporation (contractor) is performing a supplemental update to the 2018 watershed plan that was originally developed as a requirement under the Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations (Public Law 83-566).

The Supplemental Watershed Plan (SWP) will include a range of natural resource conservation measures and water efficiency improvements in a portion of the Lower Gunnison Basin, including but not limited to, practices and projects that increase water conservation, water quality improvements, enhancement of aquatic species habitat, soil health and mitigation of public safety risks (e.g., flooding) while supporting and improving existing agricultural land use.

The SWP will cover proposed actions in three watershed areas: the North Fork of the Gunnison Water Conservancy District area, the Crawford Water Conservancy District area, and the Bostwick Park Water Conservancy District area.  Specific project areas, footprints and limits to disturbance will be defined during the scoping process. Improvements under consideration re not yet funded. It is anticipated that in the future these actions may be funded through federal, state and/or local sources (e.g., USDA-NRCS funding programs, US Bureau of Reclamation programs, USEPA Non-point source programs, and/or Colorado Water Conservation Board programs.

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Council on Environmental Quality’s regulations at 40 CFR Parts 1500-1508 require an evaluation and disclosure of potential environmental impacts associated with federal projects and actions with input from the public. In addition, cultural resources must be evaluated and mitigated as identified by the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA).

 

Access:  A request for an interpreter for the hearing impaired or for other accommodations for persons with disabilities should be made at least 48 hours before the meeting to Cassandra Shenk (970) 872-3020 or cshenk@eroresources.com.

Comments may be submitted during the public scoping period starting June 15, 2020 and ending on July 14, 2020. Comments may be emailed to cshenk@eroresources.com, or mailed to:

ERO Resources

PO Box 932

Hotchkiss CO 81419

Additional information is available online at  www.ColoradoRiverDistrict.org and or www.GunnisonRiverBasin.org or the NRCS link for Public Notices:

https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/or/newsroom/pnotice/

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