Public Meeting- Lower Wood River Watershed Plan

The Central Platte Natural Resources District (CPNRD) is partnering with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to hold a virtual public meeting regarding the Lower Wood River Watershed Improvement Project Work Plan – Environmental Assessment (Plan-EA). Due to social distancing requirements, the meeting will be held virtually through Zoom on August 18, 2020, from 5:00 – 6:30 p.m. All are welcome to watch the live presentation online. The meeting will also be recorded and a link to the recording will be posted on the CPNRD’s website. The Zoom meeting information is as follows:  https://bit.ly/3fR6YDr Meeting ID: 819 2503 7780     Password: 141296 The Lower Wood River Watershed Improvement Project is located along the Wood River downstream of Riverdale to the confluence with the Platte River and is focusing on benefiting agricultural areas and the communities of Gibbon, Shelton, Wood River, and Alda. The purpose is flood prevention and the first step is a 24-month planning process to identify projects, such as berms, dams, channel cleanout, bridge and culvert improvements, and by-pass channels that will reduce flood damages and protect lives and infrastructure. Once the Plan-EA is approved, the CPNRD will work with NRCS and other funding agencies to move into the design and construction phases. During the meeting, attendees will be able to learn more about the Plan-EA from project personnel, as well as ask questions and provide feedback. Written comments will be accepted for up to 14 days after the meeting. The Plan-EA is being prepared to fulfill National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) responsibilities pertaining to federal financial assistance received through the NRCS’s Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations (WFPO)...

July 23 Board Meeting

PRESS RELEASE Central Platte NRD Board Approves 2021 Fiscal Budget (GRAND ISLAND, NE)-  The Central Platte Natural Resources District’s board of directors approved the Fiscal 2021 budget on Thursday. A public hearing was scheduled prior to the board of directors meeting. Total requirements for the general and sinking fund are $24.7 million with the required property tax of $4,059,000; a decrease of $147,325 compared to the 2020 budget. The major expenditures in the proposed budget are $4 million to meet future Integrated Management Plan compliance, and $2.1 million in Watershed Flood Prevention and Operations grants to complete watershed assessments. The tax levy hearing will be held at 1:45 p.m. on September 3rd just prior to the August board meeting. The board meeting is being held a week later to accommodate the advertising requirements; since the valuations are not available from the counties until August 20th. OTHER ACTION ITEMS -Board Meetings Policy  Monthly board meetings are held the fourth Thursday of each month at 2:00 p.m. The Board approved permanently moving the August meeting a week later due to the timing of information to advertise for the budget levy hearing, and the November/December meetings a week early to accommodate Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.  Additional board meetings may need to be moved throughout the year but would require board action. -Appeal  The board denied an appeal from a landowner in Hall County. -Managers Report  Lyndon Vogt, general manager, gave the following updates to the board. Five producers who were issued cease and desist orders in May remain out of compliance with the Groundwater Quality Management Program including Bernard Katzberg, Artie Moeller,...

June 25 Board Meeting

PRESS RELEASE Spring Groundwater Levels Continue to Increase in the Central Platte NRD (GRAND ISLAND, NE)- On Thursday, Luke Zakrzewski, GIS image analyst, reported to the Central Platte Natural Resources District board that the average spring groundwater levels across the District had an accumulated gain of 3.29 feet from spring 1982 to spring 2020. Groundwater levels are averaged from the 413 observation and irrigation wells that NRD staff read annually from mid-April to mid-June; which consists of one well per every three miles. Additional observation wells will be installed this fall. A majority of the NRD’s 24 Ground Water Management Areas (GWMAs) saw increases because of above-average precipitation during 2019 that continued through this spring.  Last year’s groundwater levels were also up 2.08 feet compared to 1982 because of the above-normal precipitation. A comparison of the 1982 levels were established as the standard for Central Platte’s Groundwater Management Plan with maximum acceptable declines and a margin of safety calculated for each of the District’s 24 Ground Water Management Areas (GWMAs). Six of the 24 GWMAs are currently below the 1982 groundwater levels and subject to the 25% decline regulation that does not allow transfers of irrigated acres into the areas or supplemental wells. In 2012, the NRD’s Rules and Regulations began requiring the areas to stay in suspension for five years to lessen additional declines. If the water table would fall to 50% of the maximum decline, Phase II would go into effect requiring mandatory reductions in irrigated acres. For details on specific areas contact Luke Zakrzewski at (308) 385-6282 or luke@cpnrd.org. OTHER ACTION/AGENDA ITEMS -2021 Budget  The board...

May 28th Board Meeting

FEMA Releases New Flood Maps in Central Platte NRD for parts of Hall County and Northwest Grand Island At Central Platte Natural Resources District’s (CPNRD) audio/video meeting on May 28th, assistant manager Jesse Mintken reported to the board of directors that FEMA released the new flood maps for parts of Hall County and northwest Grand Island.  The proposed map changes from the Upper Prairie/Silver/Moores Flood Control Project can be found at https://www.grand-island.com/departments/regional-planning/regional-planning/flood-maps. FEMA released a Letter of Map Revision (LOMR) consisting of seven revised map panels in northwest Grand Island and in Hall County north and west of Grand Island. This LOMR reduces the floodplain and ultimately requirements for flood insurance for hundreds of property owners.  FEMA is holding a 90-day appeal period to accept technical appeals, if no valid appeals are submitted the effective date for the new maps in the LOMR is September 25, 2020. After September 25th, property owners in the revised areas should contact their insurance company about shifting their Flood Insurance Policy to a preferred rate policy if they are no longer in the regulatory flood plain and contact their lender to determine if their loan still requires a flood insurance policy. A low-cost preferred rate policy is recommended as additional insurance for property that may still be in or near the revised flood risk areas, as flooding impacts are not covered by other forms of insurance. For details about the impact on flood insurance contact Chad Nabity, Hall County Planning Director at (308) 385-5240. Project details are available on CPNRD’s webpage http://cpnrd.org/flood-control and at https://www.floodsafe-cpnrd.org/. For information about the project and the structures...

April 23 Board Meeting

Central Platte NRD Selects College Scholarships Recipients (GRAND ISLAND, NE)- The Central Platte Natural Resources District (CPNRD) board of directors selected five recipients for the Ron Bishop-CPNRD College Scholarship Program at their meeting held via conference on Thursday.  The students selected are Amanda Fay of Grand Island, Jason Line of Miller, Myles Mendell of Gothenburg, Klint Gill of Cozad, and Joshua Wiese of Shelton.  The students were selected based on their natural resources major and will receive $1,000 scholarships for the 2020-2021 academic year. Other Action/Reports -Nitrogen Management Reports The board approved issuing 92 cease and desist orders to producers who are in violation of the CPNRD’s Rules and Regulations for failure to submit their 2020 Nitrogen management forms and/or Nitrogen management tests. Irrigators in Phases II/III of the NRD’s Groundwater Quality Management Program are required to submit annual reports online at cpnrd.gisworkshop.com by March 31st annually.  The reports are required prior to the irrigation season to allow producers to utilize UNL’s recommended nitrogen application rate; which is calculated as the producers fill out the forms for each of their fields. The cease and desist will be violated if the producer irrigates. Penalties for violation are potential fines ranging from $1,000 – $5,000 per violation and/or loss of irrigated acres, ineligibility for NRD cost-share, and restriction from transferring irrigated acres.  For more information about the crop reporting form or the Groundwater Quality Management Program, visit cpnrd.org or contact Tricia Dudley at (308) 385-6282 or dudley@cpnrd.org. -Watershed & Flood Prevention Operations (WFPO) NRCS has approved a grant application for 100% of the cost for completing a watershed and flood prevention operations...

March 26 Board Meeting

Board of Directors Meeting     Thursday, March 26, 2020     2:00 p.m. Conference Call PRESS RELEASE Central Platte NRD Board Votes to Continue Funding for GeoCloud Project (GRAND ISLAND, NE- The Central Platte Natural Resources District (CPNRD) held its monthly board of directors meeting via conference call on Thursday. The CPNRD’s physical office is closed to the public to monitor the evolving Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation; however, all calls are being answered. Action Items -Nebraska GeoCloud Project   The board approved the 2020 GeoCloud Interlocal Cooperative Agreement to continue the project through 2022 in the amount of $6,800. The annual project collects airborne geomagnetic imagery with the intention to correlate that data with sub-surface geology and hydrogeology.  Central Platte NRD has been a partner since 2016 when the project was initiated as a joint effort with the following NRDs: Lewis & Clark, Lower Elkhorn, Lower Platte North, Lower Platte South, Nemaha, Papio-Missouri River, Lower Loup, Upper Elkhorn, and Twin Platte. Other partners include USGS, Aqua Geo Frameworks, and the University of Nebraska’s Conservation and Survey Division.  The project received $247,437.60 from the Nebraska Natural Resources Commission in December of 2016; that funding period will conclude on June 30, 2020. -Monitoring Well Bids   The board awarded Sargent Irrigation the contract to construct 18 monitoring wells in the amount of $107,971.15. The monitoring wells will be drilled within one year in Buffalo, Custer, Dawson, and Frontier counties to provide additional data for the District’s Groundwater Management Program. Four bids were received. -Platte River Resilience Fund   The board appointed Deb VanMatre, Gibbon, to represent CPNRD on the Platte River Resilience Fund Advisory Committee. The fund will...

Feb 27 Board Action

Central Platte NRD Board Selects Fire Contractor (GRAND ISLAND, NE)-  The Central Platte Natural Resources District’s (CPNRD) board of directors selected Scholl Fire and Fuels Management to implement 10-17 burns within the District this spring at their board meeting on Thursday. Landowners have applied for prescribed burns on up to 6,000 acres. Scholl had the low bid of $64,441 to supply a fire crew and equipment for 26 days. The CPNRD’s Prescribed Fire Program’s goal is to control undesirable vegetation, prepare sites for harvesting, planting or seeding; reduce wildfire hazards, improve wildlife habitat and plant production, remove slash and debris, and to restore and maintain ecological sites. Other Board Action -Outdoor Classroom Application  The Programs Committee approved an Outdoor Classroom Community application in the amount of $2,000 from Success Academy of Grand Island Senior High to plant 23 trees on Grand Island Boulevard. The trees will replace those lost to disease and storms. Students will be partnered with the City of Grand Island Parks and Recreation Department to receive hands-on training to learn how, when, and why it’s important to have a diversified tree canopy for our community. -Project Amendment  The board approved Amendment #9 in the amount of $135,539.97 from JEO Consulting Group to align an access road for a berm extension, install staff gauges, implement a flood alert modeling program, and develop an ArcGIS online map viewer for the Upper Prairie/Silver/Moores Creek Flood Risk Reduction Project. -Grant Application The board authorized staff to apply for a Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations Program (WFPO) grant for the Turkey Creek Watershed (49,011 acres) through the USDA- Natural Resources Conservation...

CPNRD to Select Fire Contractor

PRESS RELEASE Central Platte NRD Board to Select Fire Contractor (GRAND ISLAND, NE)-  The Central Platte Natural Resources District’s board of directors will review bids and select a fire contractor at their meeting at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 27, 2020. The NRD hires a contractor and crew to implement burns within the District for landowners who have applied for a prescribed burn. The program’s goal is to control undesirable vegetation, prepare sites for harvesting, planting or seeding, to control plant disease, reduce wildfire hazards, improve wildlife habitat, improve plant production quantity and/or quality, remove slash and debris, enhance seed and seedling production, to facilitate distribution of grazing and browsing animals, and to restore and maintain ecological sites. Other Board Agenda Items -Outdoor Classroom Application  The Programs Committee will review an Outdoor Classroom application from the Success Academy of Grand Island Senior High to plan 23 trees down Grand Island Boulevard to replace trees lost to disease and storms. -Chairmen Selections  Board members will select a chairman for the Water Quality, Water Quantity, Variance/Appeals, Programs, Eastern, and Western committees -Groundwater Management Plan   Update on Olsson’s rewrite of Central Platte NRD’s Groundwater Management Plan. -Legislative Report  Report on bills relating to natural resources introduced in this session. -Managers Report  Lyndon Vogt, general manager, will report to the board. -Natural Resources Conservation Service  Joe Krolikowski and Janelle Taubenheim will report. -Nebraska Association of Resources District  Jim Bendfeldt will report. -Nebraska Natural Resources Commission  Mick Reynolds, Middle Platte Basin representative, will report. -Cost-Share  Applications through the Nebraska Soil and Water Conservation and the Central Platte NRD cost-share programs will be considered. -Primary...

Jan 23 Board Action

PRESS RELEASE VanMatre and Ostermeier Elected as CPNRD Secretary & Treasurer (GRAND ISLAND, NE)-  The Central Platte Natural Resources District board of directors elected Deb VanMatre (Gibbon) for board secretary and Keith Ostermeier (Grand Island) for board treasurer at their meeting on Thursday. Officers may serve two, two-year terms. VanMatre has served one term as secretary and Keith Ostermeier took the seat held by Chuck Maser who had served two full terms as treasurer and was not eligible for re-election. Other Board Agenda Items -Violation Reports  Luke Zakrzewski, GIS image analyst, reported that 12 landowners/producers irrigated land that isn’t certified or approved for irrigation through a transfer in 2019. Zakrzewski said the number of violations has continued to drop each year. Violation letters will be mailed next week notifying violators that they must contact the CPNRD by February 27th to resolve the violations. If the land continues to be irrigated without certifying the acres in question, a cease and desist order will be issued and violators could face action in District Court. Tricia Dudley, water quality programs assistant, reported that 10 producers who received cease and desist orders in December had not resolved their violations for failure to submit their 2019 Nitrogen Management forms and/or tests. CPNRD legal counsel will contact the following individuals about potential penalties: Andrew Blessin, Kenesaw; William/Hazel Johnston, Vacaville CA; John Kearney, Overton; Mike Munsterman, Glenville; Jeff Perry, Shelby; Donald Santin Jr, Fullerton; William Soll, Columbus; Tim Sullivan, Lincoln; Richard Urban, Silver Creek; Quincy Week, Kearney. Irrigated acres under a cease and desist order cannot be irrigated until they are in compliance with the District’s...

April Board Agenda

THURSDAY, APRIL 25, 2019 Central Platte NRD Board of Directors Meeting 10:00 – 10:30 Variance/Appeals Subcommittee Meeting 10:30 – 11:00 Eastern Projects Committee Meeting 11:00 – 11:30 Western Projects Committee Meeting 11:30 – 11:45 Programs Committee 12:30 – 1:15 Water Quality Committee Meeting 1:15 – 2:00 Water Quantity Committee Meeting 2:00 Board of Directors Meeting BUSINESS 1. TAPS Program  Chuck Burr, UNL, will explain the TAPS program and goal to facilitate farm management strategies through competitions. 2. NRCS Report   Joe Krolikowski, district liaison, will report. 3. Variance/Appeals   Review and recommendation on an appeal from Hall County. 4. Eastern Projects Committee   Review preliminary 2020 Fiscal budget. 5. Western Projects Committee   Review preliminary 2020 Fiscal budget. 6. Programs Committee  Review and recommendation on Ron Bishop-CPNRD College Scholarship applications. 7. Water Quality Committee  A. Compliance  Discuss cease & desist option for producers who haven’t submitted their 2019 Nitrogen Management forms and/or Nitrogen Management tests.  B. Budget Review preliminary 2020 Fiscal budget. 8. Water Quantity Committee  A. Wetland Easement  Discussion Review with possible action.  B. Budget  Review preliminary 2020 Fiscal budget. 9. Vehicle Review and take action on vehicle bids. 10. Managers Report  Lyndon Vogt will report. 11. Nebraska Habitat Conservation Coalition Mark Czaplewski will request a change of representation on the Coalition (NHCC). 12. Nebraska Natural Resources Commission  Mick Reynolds will report. 13. Nebraska Association of Resources Districts  Jim Bendfeldt will report. 14. Cost-Share  Action on cost-share requests through CPNRD and the NSWCP programs. 15. Financial Report  Action on the April financial report. 16. Other  As may develop prior to the board...