Final EA Issued for Fremont-Madison Irrigation District Title Transfer

Media Contact: John Redding, (208) 378-5212
Chris Ketchum, (208) 678-0461 ext. 34

For Release: September 14, 2004

The Bureau of Reclamation issued the Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the transfer of title of certain facilities to the Fremont-Madison Irrigation District. The facilities are located near the Henry's Fork of the Snake River between Ashton, St. Anthony, and Rexburg, Idaho.

Facilities included in the transfer include the Cross Cut Diversion Dam, the Cross Cut Canal, and the Teton Exchange Wells and associated water right permit. The Cross Cut Canal extends approximately 7 miles from the Cross Cut Diversion Dam to the Teton River near Newdale, Idaho. The Teton Exchange Wells are located west of State Highway 20 in Fremont and Madison Counties.

"This title transfer represents Reclamation's commitment to work in cooperation with the irrigation district, which has earned title to the property, while also removing additional costs to the taxpayer," said Reclamation Commissioner John Keys. "The complexities of the issues involved in this transfer were not evident at the onset in 1996, but throughout the process all parties worked together to bring this to a successful conclusion."

This environmental assessment verifies Reclamation's compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. The NEPA process is used to determine whether or not there are significant adverse impacts to the human environment associated with the proposed title transfer of specific irrigation facilities, appurtenant lands, and associated rights to the Fremont-Madison Irrigation District.

The Fremont-Madison Conveyance Act (Public Law 108-85) directs the Secretary of the Interior, through the Bureau of Reclamation, to transfer all rights, title, and interest of the United States in certain facilities, land, and a water right permit of the Minidoka and Teton Basin Projects to the irrigation district. The Fremont-Madison Conveyance Act mandated a change of ownership; therefore, Reclamation analyzed two alternatives in the environmental assessment: the no action alternative and the proposed action of transferring title as directed in the Act. Reclamation found that the transfer will have no significant effect on the environment.

The final environmental assessment and FONSI are available on the internet at Reclamation's Pacific Northwest Regional Office webpage Additional hard copies or CD-ROM versions of the report may also be obtained free of charge by contacting Mike Relf at the Bureau of Reclamation, Pacific Northwest Regional Office, 1150 North Curtis Road, Suite 100, Boise ID 83706-1234, (208) 378-5106 or by e-mail at

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