It appears the Carson Water Subconservancy District will become a bistate river monitoring agency, the first of its kind in the nation.
District General Manager Ed James and the district's attorney, Scott Brooke, will explore the process of having a "joint powers" agreement with Alpine County in place in time to present a proposal to the 2001 Nevada Legislature.
"When we have gotten together with Alpine County and agree on a proposal I will bring a resolution of concept to the board," James said at Wednesday's board meeting. "I would like to have a bill draft ready this summer in order to be ready for the 2001 session."
According to Brooke, Alpine County commissioners want to be a part of the district. If the effort is successful, the entire Carson River system would be incorporated into the monitoring agency's membership.
The 11-member board comprises five members from Douglas County and two each from Carson City, Lyon and Churchill counties.
Douglas County board representative Jacques Etchegoyhen said he was not aware of any other agreementestablished to govern a river that crosses state boundaries.
"This is an historic step. There is a lot of work to be done, but it will save a lot of grief in the long run," he said. "This may seem like a small thing to some, but a bistate agreement will carry some clout."
James sees the bistate agreement as the first of many such agreements.
"Once we have the format in place, we may see this happen up and down the coast or anywhere in the country where we have water crossing state boundaries," he said.
The headwaters of the Carson River form in Alpine County. Water rights along the river are directed by the Alpine Decree and bringing Alpine County into the district would have no affect on that agreement, officials said.