User fee, budget on RRWCD meeting agenda

An increase to the Republican River Water Conservation District’s water use fee, as well as the 2022 budget are among the items on the RRWCD Board of Directors meeting’s agenda set for November 16 in Wray.

The meeting will begin at 10 a.m., and will be held in the meeting room at the Cobblestone Inn and Suites. The hearing on the proposed water use fee increase will begin at 10:45 a.m.
The RRWCD is seeking to increase the fee to help pay for retiring more irrigated acres. It is doing so because Colorado is on the clock for meeting its side of a resolution approved in 2016 by the Republican River Compact Administration, consisting of Colorado, Kansas and Nebraska.
Colorado was granted 100-percent credit for the water delivered to the Republican River by the compact compliance pipeline located near Laird in eastern Yuma County.
In exchange for this, Colorado agreed to retire up to 25,000 acres in the South Fork Republican drainage area, known as the South Fork Focus Zone.
The first 10,000 acres are to be retired by the end of 2024, and the remaining 15,000 acres retired by December 21, 2029.
The RRWCD earlier this year approved resolutions that changes the rates to be paid for conservation contracts in the South Fork Focus Zone.
The payments have been increased considerably. To off-set the added expense, the RRWCD is considering increasing the Water Use Fee to a total of $30 per irrigated acre, more than doubling the current fee, starting in 2022. The increase would be on the 2022 tax roll, and would be payable in early 2023.
The RRWCD held a series of public meetings earlier this fall regarding the increased rates for conservation contracts, and the proposal to increase the use fee to help cover the costs.
RRWCD’s quarterly meeting in Wray also will include a hearing on the proposed 2022 budget, followed by the board voting to approve the budget.
Public comment on anything else also will be heard at 1 p.m.
The board will receive several reports, including one from State Engineer Kevin Rein and Chris Kucera, team leader of the Republican River Water Commissioner Team.
For those wishing to participate in the meeting via Zoom, a link will be provided at
For further information, please contact RRWCD General Manager Deb Daniel at (970) 332-3552, or email her at [email protected].