Shift in seats will leave one Tri-Basin board vacancy, Republican Basin IMP approved Tuesday
By Lori Potter,
Holdrege - A resignation and the redrawing of subdistrict boundaries based on the 2010 Census will result in reorganization of the Tri-Basin Natural Resources District Board of Directors. A retirement reception for 18-year director Dick Helms of Arapahoe preceded Tuesday's board meeting. Helms has served Subdistrict 1, but resigned after moving outside the NRD.
Tri-Basin General Manager John Thorburn said the plan is for Director Phyllis Johnson of Bertrand to serve the remaining two years of Helms' term. She has represented Subdistrict 2, but the new boundaries place her residence in Subdistrict 1. Similarly, new boundaries have Subdistrict 4 Director Joe Larson of Loomis now in Subdistrict 2. Thorburn said Larson will move to Johnson's Subdistrict 2 seat for a term that expires at the end of 2012. No one has filed for election to that seat, so the board could consider appointing Larson for a full term after the first of the year. Thorburn expects that Johnson and Larson will have to resign their current positions and then be appointed by the board to their new subdistrict seats.
That leaves a vacancy for Larson's Subdistrict 4 seat, for which there are two years left in the term. Thorburn said the subdistrict includes about two-thirds of Holdrege and townships to the north. It will be filled by board appointment. First, he will clarify the process with the NRD's legal counsel, Jeff Cox of Holdrege. One issue is whether Tri-Basin must advertise for all three seats or only the Subdistrict 4 vacancy. More information will be presented at the next regular board meeting, which has been moved from June 12 to June 19 at the Tri-Basin office in Holdrege.
On another issue Tuesday, the board unanimously approved the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources and Tri-Basin joint integrated management plan for the part of the
Thorburn said there will be changes in the transfer of certified irrigated acres. A one-for-one transfer will be allowed if there is no depletion increase, but a greater number of offset acres may be required if a transfer would result in a greater streamflow depletion. Tri-Basin's Planning Committee will meet May 23 to look at changes to the NRD's rules and regulations related to the IMP. Thorburn said the committee may have a report for the June or July board meeting.
The Projects and Construction Committee will meet the same day. Options will be discussed to preserve pivot corners that have been enrolled the past five years in a special U.S. Department of Agriculture Environmental Quality Incentives Program initiative.
Thorburn said the program paid landowners to provide wildlife habitat on pivot corners. Those EQIP enrollments expire in the fall. The board discussed the issue Tuesday with John Laux of Alma, a biologist with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission.
Thorburn said the pivot corners could be enrolled in the federal Conservation Reserve Program, and the NRD committee will look at options to use state and local resources for wildlife corners incentives.
© 2008-2013 agNET. All rights reserved