BWC August 25, 2008 Meeting Minutes

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Present: Carl Malesich, John Osborne, Russ Kipp, Tom Rice, Dick Oswald, Mike McLane, Rob Vandern, Barbara Bauerle, Pete Schade, Kyle Hardin, J.S. Turner, Katie TackettThe keynote speakers for the August 25, 2008, 2008 regular meeting were Mike McLane, Water Specialist for Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks, and Pete Shade, TMDL Planner for the Department of Environmental Quality.

Mike McLane presented “A Briefing: Montana’s Legislative Water Policy Committee & Possible Water Legislation.” He explained the Water Policy Interim Committee and gave a handout with a brief overview of the committee and potential legislation. Some key points from that handout: The Water Policy committee grew out of 2007 legislative actions responding to the Montana Supreme Courts’ Smith River vs. TU case regarding the connection of surface and ground water. The surface/ground water appropriation issue was addressed directly last session in House Bill 831. That bill modified Montana Water Law, particularly those sections of statute dealing with ground water appropriations in basins that are closed to most new surface water rights. At their next meeting September 11th and 12th they will determine which if any of the following eight bills will advance as a committee recommendation.

Bill Number Short Title
LC5007 Groundwater Data study through MBMG
LC5009 Discharge permits required
LC5012 MDOT wetland exemption
LC 5014 Public water and sewer
LC5015 Water System Revolving fund
LC5019 Permitting Subdivision water systems
LC5020 DNRC Water Right Permitting – preliminary determinations
LC5021 Revises water right enforcement laws

Mike left handouts on the bills with the BWC. If you would like to review any of these please contact Katie with the BWC for copies.

Pete Shade gave a brief update on the TMDL for the Beaverhead. DEQ will be conducting stream sampling throughout the Beaverhead watershed during early September to collect water quality samples for nutrient and metals analysis. HydroSolutions has been contracted by DEQ to collect these samples and will be coordinating with the Beaverhead Watershed Committee to obtain access and notify adjacent landowners of sampling activity. Information collected will be used in watershed-scale evaluations and to support total maximum daily load development for nutrients and metals (lead, cadmium, copper, zinc, arsenic). DEQ has prepared a detailed Sampling and Analysis Plan that explains the scope of work to be performed. The Sampling and Analysis Plan describes water quality parameters to be collected, sampling site locations, and analytical procedures used. A copy of the Plan and be obtained from the BWC or through the DEQ.

Grant and Project Updates:
· The path forward for the USBOR/MFWP MOU coordination effort was discussed and future actions were suggested. A letter was finalized and the mailing list for distribution was reviewed. A meeting date of September 23, 2008 at 6pm has been set. The meeting will take place in the Search and Rescue Building. A preliminary meeting in Bozeman to discuss the presentation and meeting agenda will be the first week of September.
· The Spring Creek Restoration Project, funded under a DNRC Renewable Resource Grant, is moving forward. Kirk Engineering has been chosen to do the final design work for the Stream/Riparian Restoration work. In the letter of agreement October 31, 2008 has been set for the design completion and December 31, 2008 for the proper permitting to be issued.
· Title II funding which provided the Resource Advisory Committee funds for Blacktail Ridge Weed project was extended to December 31, 2009. In 2008 two weed days at Clark Canyon covered 17 acres and one weed day on Blacktail Ridge covered 13 acres. The remaining funds will be discussed with the County to decide where and when to spray again.
· The Beaverhead TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) project was updated by Pete Shade at DEQ. Sampling will begin early September. See the presentation summary above for more details.
· DNRC WPA Grant 2008 (awarded in July 2007) is set to expire in December 2008. Grant applications are currently being accepted for 2009 funds. The deadline for this grant is September 30, 2008.
· Final report forthcoming on the Future Fisheries Grant for Spring Creek Culvert Replacement.
Other Business
§ The next meeting will be held at 6 p.m., Tuesday, September 23, 2008 at the Search and Rescue Building in Dillon. This meeting will be completely devoted to the MOU project.

As always the public is invited.