TCID holds allotments steady

Drought conditions caused water shutoff to farmers and ranchers in July.

Drought conditions caused water shutoff to farmers and ranchers in July.

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It’s status quo for the Truckee-Carson Irrigation District.

The board of directors met Monday for its monthly meeting and revisited the water season. The directors opted to stay the course as the season will close in mid-July.

The wildlife entities, meanwhile, will begin receiving water orders around Sept. 1 after a plan put in placed allowed them to take water after the irrigation season.

Despite heavy rains in May, which produced about 4,000 acre-feet of water in Lahontan Reservoir, the moisture was not enough to extend the season any further, according to Deputy Project Manager Walt Winder.

The severe drought has kept the district ever watchful of forecasts, deliveries and flows from the Truckee River. Each of the past three months, the board has engaged in detailed discussions about the allotments.

In March, the board set the season at 40 percent for the Carson and Truckee divisions, and then voted to increase the allotments to 50 percent in April after the snow melted in the Sierra Mountains.

By May, however, the forecasts shifted and TCID reduced the amount to 45 percent for each division.

Winder said at the May meeting the district must pull back its allotment to stay within its ability to fill late-season water orders from Stillwater Farms and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and keep a minimum pool to protect fish at Lahontan Reservoir.

Winder said the district attempted to stretch the season by reducing flows from the reservoir, but the logistics of scheduling and delivering were too daunting. As a result, the most effective means of delivery were to reduce the allocation to 45 percent.

In other TCID news —

Winder reported the new hydroelectric plant at Lahontan Reservoir is generating 3,007 kilowatts of power. 26-foot Drop, meanwhile, is producing 650 kW.

Treasurer Lester de Braga updated the board on the current budget.

He said the district is on target to meet its fiscal year 2013-14 budget, and the finance committee will begin outlining next year’s budget.

The board approved a $2,500 damage claim after flooding occurred at a residence on 3950 Schindler Road.

Water flooded the residence’s back yard and damaged hay bales after ditch riders did not check to determine if the ditch was clear. Water flowed over the gate boards and flooded the area.

The board also discussed the level of responsibility for homeowner’s who do not follow TCID’s regulations concerning pulling boards and maintaining safety measures.

U.S. Bureau of Reclamation interim Area Manager Terry Edwards reported to the board a successor for Kenneth Parr, the former area manager of the Lahontan Basin, should be completed by September.

Edwards said she intends to apply for the position. She will be the interim manager through July, then the BOR will replace her with another individual from August through September in another trial period.


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