Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2016

Funding drain

DOE: Eastern Washington water projects need millions

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Capital Press

The $200 million the Legislature dedicated a decade ago to develop new water supplies for Eastern Washington has been nearly exhausted, leaving the state with no long-term plan to complete projects, a Department of Ecology official told an advisory group. “We’re at a key point in the program’s life,” Office of Columbia River Director Tom Tebb said. Unless lawmakers commit to another major funding package, the projects will be funded piecemeal in biennial budgets.

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Idaho Senate panel clears water-deal resolutions

MagicValley.com

Three measures meant to help implement the Eastern Snake Plain Aquifer water deal sailed through an Idaho Senate committee. One grants the state’s support for the settlement between the Eastern Snake’s water users, while the second affirms support for increasing managed recharge. The third asks the Water Resource Board to implement aquifer stabilization projects throughout the state.

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Frog lawsuit could change Deschutes River flows

The Bulletin

Environmentalists and irrigators have differing opinions on how a court order being sought for changes in Deschutes River flows would affect farms, ranches and other water users. The Center for Biological Diversity and WaterWatch of Oregon filed for a preliminary injunction, requesting the Bureau of Reclamation and five irrigation districts manage the river’s water differently.

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