Kittitas County Water Purveyors :: Archived News
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March 6th, 2012
Sometimes compliance actions take place not because of something a landowner did, but beaus of something they didn't do. Check back soon to find out the specific BMP's that Ecology will be looking for in their upcoming compliance monitoring throughout the valley. I'll try to have those posted by the end of the week.
March 16, 2011: The 2011 sampling season begins in two weeks! Time is running out to get your water quality imporvemetn projects in place. Remember that 2011 is the sediment TMDL complaince year, so it is more important than ever to make sure the water leaving your property is clean. Need help funidng your project? Give me a call at 925-6158.
The following message comes to us from CWU. If you have the time, please follow the links below to provide your feedback on this new interactive water rights map.
Hello, my name is Michael Pease and I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography at Central Washington University. As part of a Department of Agriculture grant, I have created a water resource decision support system (WRDSS) for the Kittitas Valley. I am now seeking participation in a survey to elicit feedback on the DSS to assess its utility for individual stakeholders and water management institutions.
Reasonable and appropriate safeguards have been used in the creation of the web-based survey to maximize the confidentiality and security of your responses; however, when using information technology, it is never possible to guarantee complete privacy. To add to security, the survey is anonymous, and please feel free to omit any information you do not fee comfortable providing. Let me know if you have any questions regarding the surveys content, scope, or intent or the content and scope of the WRDSS.
To view the WRDSS, click on the link below. The WRDSS will open in
a new internet window.
To participate in the survey, simply follow the link below:
Please note: the February meeting of the KCWP Board of Directors has been moved up to Thursday, January 27th.
Happy New Year!
We hope to see you at the E3 Winter Fair on January 29th. Besides gifts from KEEN for the first 50 guests, there will be numerous door prizes from the various educational booths and vendors. Sign up at the KCWP booth for a chance to win a $30 gift certificate toward the KCCD native plant sale!
Junior water rights holders are happy to hear the latest water forecast, but we're all still shaking our heads in wonder at the strange year it's been so far. Sound water management is still vital, so if you have any questions, please get in touch.
Plans are almost finalized for the KCWP to become a partner with the the City of Ellensburg, the Mid-Columbia Fisheries Enhancement Group, Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife, and multiple other groups and agencies on the Lower Currier Creek Restoration project. We'll be contributing $80,00 of Ecology grant money this year, and will likely contribute a higher amount next year.
This money comes from the same pot as we build fences for livestock exclusion from waterways on irrigated lands. So, if you have a project you've been putting off, let us know ASAP, before the grant money is all gone.
As always, if you see a water quality problem anywhere in the valley, let us know. Ecology will soon be cracking down on problems harder than ever before, so lets get those solved before they're even bigger headaches for everyone involved.
Get Intimate with the Shrub Steppe! Come see us on Saturday, May 1st, at Helen McCabe park, just at the entrance of the Yakima Canyon.
Sampling is underway, and so far we've seen a cleaner spring than in the past. This is good news for maintaining healthy soil on the fields, as well as maintaining healthy habitat in and along the streams and river.
All the irrigation companies have turned on the water and started deliveries. If you notice sediment coming from your field and want to find permanent solutions to the problem, please give us a call. We can pay up to 75% of the project cost! If you see damaging levels of sediment entering a stream or canal, even if it's not your own, please let us know. If the irrigator is using water from an irrigation district or company, we can work with the owner to fix the situation. If the irrigator is using creek water, we still need to know so we can make sure that irrigation districts/companies aren't penalized by the Department of Ecology for the situation.
Work is continuing for the multi-agency supported Reecer Creek floodplain restoration project south of Dolarway and north of I-90. Volunteer opportunities are numerous, including planting and helping fish move out of the de-watered portion of the stream. If you can lend a hand, let us know!
It's April, and around here that means water sampling has begun again! Look for us out and about in the white pickup with the KRD logo. If you have any questions about what we're doing, feel free to contact us here in the office or out in the field.
This year's sampling regime includes sampling the tailend spill of the major irrigation districts' canals and key tributaries of the Yakima River. We're testing the turbidity, total suspended solids, temperature, and flow rate at each of these ten sites. Further, we have thermistors (electronic thermometers) distributed in creeks and the Yakima River throughout the county. We also have several tubidity sensors and loggers monitoring water quality at five locations.
2010 is designated as the compliance check under the Wilson Creek Sub-basin Bacteria TMDL. However, it sounds like Ecology lacks the funding to do the testing this year. What does this mean? You have one more year to ensure that livestock are fenced away from the creeks and irrigation ditches on your property. If you need financial assistance, please contact us. We can pay for up to 75% of the project cost!
Finally, did you catch the article about us in the Ellensburg Daily Record? The story isn't available online, but you might be able to get a copy from their office.
See you in the field!
Spring is upon us, and the water situation looks a bit tight for the year. Let's keep our fingers crossed for a cold wet spring and a cool summer with little wind!
2010 is the last year we have to make improvements to irrigated landscapes prior to the 2011 target set in Ecology's 2110 water cleanup plan (Upper Yakima River Basin Suspended Sediment and Organochlorine Pesticide Total Maximum Daily Load). Clicking the link at the bottom of the page will take you to an application form for financial assistance with projects that can reduce sediment in our canals and streams.
Bi-weekly water quality sampling will commence in April. Total Suspended Sediment (TSS), turbidity, temperature, and flow will be monitored at approximately ten sites throughout Kittitas Valley. Further temperature monitoring efforts extend countywide.
In other news, the KCWP is teaming up with the Mid-Columbia Regional Fisheries Enhancement Group, the City of Ellensburg, the Yakama Nation, and other agencies to reconnect a portion of Reecer Creek with its floodplain. Stay tuned for more details and pics of the site. This is an exciting project and should have impressive results for salmon rearing and spawning in our area.
Think spring, think rain, and think of the positive impacts you can make!
December: 2008 is coming to a close, and 2009 is less than two weeks away! The reservoir levels are on track, the snow is falling, and as long as our pipes don't freeze we're all set. Now is the time to submit your ideas for water quality improvement on your property. Come spring, we can implement the projects so that this summer your water will be clean. Sound good? Call me!
Remember, the threshold for the 2009 Water Quality Compliance Policy has been reduced to 200 NTU.
2009 sampling sites
were finalized at the November meeting.
Come see us at the grEEEning in the new year fair on January 10th. Click on the link for more information.
Merry Christmas, and a happy new year!
is the final month for water quality sampling at our regular (fixed) sampling
sites. We're also busy retrieving our temperature loggers from streams
all around the county, as well as the Yakima river itself. Our three real-time
turbidity sensors will also be pulled this month, and the serious data
analysis will begin. Come to our meeting in November (details over there,
on the right), at which we'll be sharing the results of our 2008 water
Where did July and August go? Summer is on its way out and our voluntary
compliance sampling ends next month. The dirty water coming into our valley
from the snowmelt this (very protracted) spring gave us high turbidity
levels later into the year than usual. BUT...the proliferation of row
crops hasn't helped us, either. Nearly every stream and irrigation district
is dirtier this year than last year. If you're putting in new plantings,
PLEASE call the KCCD regarding their PAM cost share program. Better yet,
give us a call and let's see if we can help with the cost of installing
a settling pond or other project to keep your dirt on your farm and out
of the irrigation ditches and streams.
June: The weather is warming up, finally. Is April over yet? Irrigation water has been clean compared to the run-off in the creeks in rivers coming into our valley throughout April and May. If you see a water quality problem, give us a call and we'll investigate. See our water quality compliance policy for more information by clicking over there to your left.
May update: GISS was fun, and here are the photos to prove it. We're picture number ten (scroll down the page a bit to get to the GISS slideshow).
May: Will we see you at KEEN's Get Intimate with the Shrub-Steppe (GISS) in the Umtanum? Come play in our watershed: build your own beaver dam, water your own field or orchard, or just play with the ducks in our pond. It will be fun!
April: Sampling has begun, with thirteen testing sites around the valley. Samples are taken weekly, usually on Wednesdays, and brought back to our lab for turbidity analysis. We are also collecting flow data at some sites. Contact us if you have any questions about our procedures, sites, and/or results.
February 21st: KCWP staff will be out and about in the next few months, meeting with various groups and integrating their views into our program. Of course, you can come see us in person anytime you'd like, but if you're interested, please consider visiting one of our upcoming booths or hearing one of our presentations.
March 7, 8:30-4:00
pm. E3 conference focusing on the legislature's Environment-Education-Economy
Program. Held at the fairgrounds. More
January 17th: Our application for financial assistance from the Washington State Department of Ecology's 319 non-point water quality program ranked #7 in the state.
Funding for your on-farm BMP projects should be available by fall. Turn your application in now, and we'll contact you when the money is available. Follow the link below for your application.
January 2nd: Irrigation district rates for participation in the KCWP remain at 50 cents per acre for 2008. This rate has not increased since the KCWP was first formed by the irrigation providers.
April 21, 2006 Damman Elementary Schoool students released chinook salmon raised in their school aquarium into Wilson Creek. The students were divided into groups travelling through learning centers throughout the afternoon at McElroy Park. The KCWP learning center focused on determining if the water in Wilson Creek met the requirements for healthy salmon fry. Students performed various tests on the water and were happy to learn that stream conditions did meet the needs for their fish.
February 14, 2006 Come to our next Public Presentation on February 23rd at Hal Holmes Community Center from 7:00-9:00 PM. Topics include mechanical vegetation removal from canals and local 2005 water quality results achieved using a combination of our tried and true sampling techniques combined with high-tech monitoring systems. See you there!
January 31, 2006 The Water Purveyors encourage you to think about installing BMPs soon! Click on the link up above to view and print out an an application for financial assistance with the installation of barrier fencing and riparian habitat restoration. Or, just give us us a call. 925-6158.
December 6, 2005 The Kittitas County Conservation District hosted an AWESOME Coordinated Resource Management (CRM) tour on October 19th. The KCWP particpiated in the tour, presented an educational display, and spoke briefly about our organization's goal, successes, and use of CRM strategies. The Capital Press published an article about the event. Here's a link to the article.
November 14, 2005 Financial assistance is available for projects that include screening irrigation diversions. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) is soliciting applications for the 2006 Fisheries Restoration and Irrigation Mitigation Act (FRIMA) grant program. FRIMA applications are due by January 13, 2006.
November 7, 2005 The public meeting is coming up soon. This is a great opportunity to learn about local water quality issues and how those issues affect you. We're meeting in Room 84 at Morgan Middle School (corner of First and Ruby Streets). Park in the school's northwest parking lot and enter the building through that door. The room is the second door on the left. Refreshments will be provided.
October 6, 2005 Whew! We've been so busy, it's hard to keep up with our website. The Waterline newsletter should be hitting your mailbox in the next couple of weeks. You'll find a really interesting article by guest columnist Pat Monk on the back page. Pat explains and discusses this summer's pulse flows on the river. Curious? Look for the letter! Besides getting the Waterline out to our members, we're finishing up this year's data collection. Our last fixed site sampling will be October 26th. Next comes the data analysis for turbidity, TSS, temperature, and bacteria results from this year. After the data is proofed, it will be available in our yearly report and online. The charts link, over there to the left, will take you to currently available information. And, as always, we're available to answer questions by phone, e~mail, or in person. The upcoming public meeting is a good place to meet and ask questions. We will be meeting at Morgan Middle School in Room 84. The best place to park is in the "new" parking lot at the northwest corner of the building. See you there!
August 27, 2005 Come see us at the Kittitas County Fair! We're in the 4-H/FFA building by the KCCD and the Farm Bureau displays. Hope to see you there--yee haw!
27, 2005 The final Submittal Report for the Wilson Creek Sub-Basin
Bacteria TMDL is available online here.
July 20, 2005 Look for the Waterline, a KCWP publication, arriving in your mailbox soon! Also, look for us at the Kittitas County Fair.
June 15, 2005 Kat Satnik will be speaking at the Yakima Basin Aquatic Science and Management Conference at CWU in the new science building.
May 13, 2005 KCWP comments on the DRAFT WIlson Creek Sub-Basin Bacteria Total Maximum Daily Load (Water Cleanup Plan).
April 30, 2005 The Final Report for the previous 319 grant is in. Look for the link on our "reports" page within the next few days.
April 26, 2005 The Board welcomes Mark Greene as the replacement for Kevin Eslinger. Mark represents individual water rights holders, and smaller irrigation companies.
5, 2005 The DRAFT Wilson Creek Sub-Basin Bacteria Total Maximum Daily
Load Submittal Report is now available online. Your comments and participation
are vital. Please come to the meeting on April 19 (Tuesday), from 6:30-8:30
PM at the Hal Holmes Center. To receive a printed copy of the draft plan,
or for more information or comments, please contact Jane Creech at 509-925-2557
or email@example.com. Written comments concerning the draft are due to
Ecology by May 10th.
March 18, 2005 Look for the KCWP at the 2005 Ag-Appreciation Day. We're working in cooperation with the Farm Bureau to teach local third and fourth graders about water quality sampling, water science, and the importance of water quality in our streams. We're looking forward to this hands-on splish-splashy day!
March 2, 2005 $$$ Apply for BMP assistance now. Need to fence livestock away from a stream? Interested in restoring a riparian area? We'll pay up to 75% of the project cost. No public easement is required, but you must agree to maintain the fence or vegetation for its "expected lifetime." Call 925-6158 (or stop by the KRD) and ask for Kat to receive more information.$$$
February 28, 2005 Good-bye Jack. Enjoy your retirement! We'll miss you.
February 27, 2005 Two important meetings are coming up: Cascade Dialogues on Thursday, March 3rd, at 6:00 p.m. at the Heritage Center at the fairgrounds; and a public hearing for NOAA Fisheries' December 2004 proposed critical habitat designations for 13 Evolutionarily Significant Units (ESUs) of Pacific salmon and steelhead in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho at 6:30 p.m. at the Ellensburg Inn. A report is available online in PDF format supporting the de-listing of Steelhead in our area.
11, 2005 From Ecology: "The Air Quality Program is pleased to
announce the availability of near-real-time PM2.5 data for the Ellensburg
area. Our sampler is located on the roof of the Hal Holmes Canter. It
is operated by Paul Rossow and Holly Myers with a great deal of assistance
from our HQ technical folks. It reports a rolling 24 hr average concentration
of ambient air pollution. You can view the data via a clickable map of
February 10, 2005 9:30-11:30 Bacteria TMDL metting at Hal Holmes.
February 7, 2005 Robo-cow! Our neighbor to the north performs outreach and implements BMPs with the best of them. Here's a funny little flash animation for your, umm, a-mooo-sement.
26, 2005 Happy 100th Birthday to Cascade Irrigation District! Congratulations!
January 12, 2005 Kathleen Satnik will give a presentation to the Cattlemen's Association on 2004 water quality results and trends over the last 3 years.
December, 2004 The new Kittitas TMDL Implementation & Compliance Monitoring Project, Section 319 Nonpoint Source Fund grant was approved for the the 2005 funding cycle. This agreeement provides $224, 036 for three years of continued water quality compliance monitoring and support of the laboratory. The lab received ongoing accreditation for 2005 in analysis of turbidity and total suspended solids.
This money also includes $50,000 to be used in best management practices (BMP) projects. We are seeking proposals for riparian revegetation projects or fencing to protect streams from livestock. We encourage proposals from private landowners or other interested parties.
November, 2004 The next Wilson Creek Sub-basin Bacteria TMDL meeting will be held on Wednesday, November 10th from 9:30-11:30 at Hal Holmes Center. The main topic is the draft submittal document. For more information contact the KCWP or Jane Creech at the Department of Ecology 925-2557.
2004 KCWP Public Meeting will be held on October 28th at 7:00 in the Damman
School Multi-purpose room. For more information, view the flier:
13, 2004 Use Attainability Analysis comment period ends. This first
draft was distributed by the Washington Department of Ecology May 2004.
It can be downloaded from their website:
August 2004 KCWP Board of Directors Meeting will be held on August 24 at 1:00 pm in the KRD office. Agenda items include current water quality issues/data and setting agenda items for the upcoming general meeting.
July 2004 KCWP Board of Directors Meeting will be held on July 27 at 1:00 pm in the KRD office. Agenda items include Water Quality Compliance Policy issues and Cascade Dialogues.
23, 2004 If you are interested in learning more about the Comprehensive
Irrigation District Management Plan (CIDMP) Process, click on the link
below. Page 13 of the PDF file (page 1-1 of the document) has a good outline
of the steps involved in preparing a CIDMP.
22, 2004 Carol Ready of the KCWP presented information on the Yakima
Tributary and Access Habitat Program at the 2004 Yakima Basin Aquatic
Science and Management Conference sponsored by Central Washington University,
Yakima/Klickitat Fisheries Project, and the Bureau of Reclamation.
May 21, 2004 The new website is up! Ok, so it still needs some work, so please bear with us. If you are looking for something and don't see it here right now, please let us know. we'll get it to you directly, and consider adding it to the site.
20, 2004 The Washington State Department of Ecology has just released
the list of Centennial and 319 Grants awarded for FY 2005. The Kittitas
County Water Purveyors, through the Kittitas Reclamation District, were
ranked number one on the list of activities to receive grant funding.
The following link takes you to the PDF file containing the announcement,
notice of the public comment period, and other information pertaining
to the grant award.
11, 2004 KCWP has just submitted its Kittitas TMDL Support and Monitoring
Interim Report to Department of Ecology for activities granted in the
field season 2002-2003. This report is available for download as a Microsoft
Word document at 66Mb.