Glenwood Springs, Colorado — Four additional West Slope water projects received funds from the Colorado River District’s Community Funding Partnership this past month, bringing the total for 2021 grants awarded to over $2 million. Created in the wake of bipartisan support of ballot measure 7A last November, the Community Funding Partnership provides grant funding to multi-benefit water projects on the Western Slope in five project categories: productive agriculture, infrastructure, healthy rivers, watershed health and water quality, and conservation and efficiency.
“Awarding over $2 million in funding is an important milestone,” said Colorado River District’s Director of Strategic Partnerships, Amy Moyer. “We’re continually reminded that our West Slope communities are committed to local solutions that bring together multiple partners to confront our water challenges head-on.”
The most recent round of grants supports four projects with $112,873 in total funding. Details on the awarded projects can be found below. To learn more about the Community Funding Partnership, please visit https://www.coloradoriverdistrict.org/community-funding-partnership/.
Grand Mesa Water Users Efficiency Project – Grand Mesa Water Users Association
With additional support from local municipalities, Grand Mesa Water Users Association received this grant for planned technological upgrades to support the Grand Mesa’s complex network of reservoirs. This “ground up” project will install electronic capacity sensors at critical reservoirs to allow for real time data collection, resulting in more efficient and accurate water deliveries. With a better understanding of water availability, agricultural producers can better respond to drought conditions and better plan their irrigation water use.
Lone Cabin Ditch Emergency Restoration Project – Lone Cabin Reservoir and Ditch Company
This project restores a section of pipe along Lone Cabin Ditch that became water-saturated and slipped down an unstable hillside on May 14, 2021. The slide created an emergency for farm irrigation operations. Quick funding response from the River District and other partners allowed an emergency repair of the ditch to return irrigation flow to 15 stockholders’ fields in mid-August to support their fields and production.
Coal Creek Diversion Analysis and Flow Measurement – Upper Yampa Water Conservancy District
Garfield & Routt Counties
The funds provided for this project will provide foundational engineering analysis and streamflow data to develop a new water supply source for Yamcolo Reservoir. Yamcolo Reservoir provides up to 7,025 AF of storage supply for communities and agricultural users in the Yampa Valley. Supporting the pre-permitting process allows partners to thoroughly explore the best way to firm up water supply for users downstream.
Rozich Ditch Relief Culvert Installation and Headgate Replacement Project – Crested Butte Land Trust
The project will improve and protect the historic Rozich Ditch from seasonal landslides that threaten the supply of water through the ditch with the installation of a relief culvert, and with the replacement of the old headgate which has shifted position and does not fully close. Through improved infrastructure, the project improves and protects water deliveries for 105 acres of hay meadows in Gunnison County and protects the neighboring riparian habitat of Washington Gulch. Strong community support from the Crested Butte Land Trust, the Town of Crested Butte, Gunnison County, and the Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District has helped this project move forward.