Reclamation News Releases News Releases from the Bureau of Reclamation Employee Appreciation Day Evolving
2015-03-31 13:38:00.0 Employee Appreciation Day is a day for employers to thank and acknowledge employees for their hard work and effort throughout the year. <P> In the past Denver Leadership has celebrated Employee Appreciation Day by hosting events and/or special recognition for employees across all Directorates in Denver. Although the foods for these events were paid for by the Directors and not government funding, the event itself has always been organized by a group of employees made up of volunteers from each Directorate. <P> This year we will be changing how our employees are celebrated. Each Directorate will be hosting their own employee appreciation day, making the celebration more personal and tailored for that specific organization. <P> We welcome your feedback on what you think of the changes we made, and how your events were conducted. <P> Interior Department Announces Plans to Partner with Crow Tribe on Yellowtail Afterbay Hydropower
2015-03-31 13:33:00.0 <b>WASHINGTON, D.C.</b> - The Department of the Interior, in partnership with the Crow Tribe, will enter into an agreement for hydropower development on the Yellowtail Afterbay Dam, downstream of Yellowtail Dam and Powerplant, on the Bighorn River near Fort Smith, Montana. <P> The agreement is part of the Crow Tribe Water Rights Settlement Act of 2010. Under the settlement, the Tribe holds the exclusive right to develop and market power generation on the Yellowtail Afterbay Dam. <P> "The Crow Tribe is excited to embark on the Tribe's exclusive right under our water settlement to develop hydropower at Yellowtail Afterbay Dam and to begin the critical work to bring the benefits of hydropower to the Reservation and our tribal membership," said Crow Chairman Darrin Old Coyote. <P> "This is an excellent opportunity for development of new hydropower capacity on existing infrastructure," said Deputy Secretary of the Interior Michael L. Connor. "Working through the Bureau of Reclamation, Interior is pleased to assist the Crow Tribe on its Yellowtail Afterbay hydro development, resulting in clean, renewable energy, and creating vital jobs in the process." <P> The Tribe is responsible for overall management of the hydropower project and for coordination of activities associated with the project. The Bureau of Reclamation will provide technical assistance in reviewing designs and making sure the new hydro coexists with the existing Yellowtail Afterbay Dam in a safe and reliable manner. <P> The next steps include completion of design data collection, followed by design and implementation of Reclamation's dam safety processes for the proposed modifications to the existing structure. <P> Denver Office Migrating to SharePoint 2013
2015-03-31 07:00:00.0 Denver Office is migrating from SharePoint 2010 to SharePoint 2013 within the next few months. We are working to make this migration as seamless as possible. Your SharePoint sites will work the same, however, SharePoint 2013 has expanded several features that will change the “look and feel” and the URL’s for each site. Because of this change, all bookmarks and shortcuts will need to be deleted and new ones created. <P> The SharePoint team will offer various training during the migration process to help ensure a smooth transition. More information will be provided to your site owners as we get closer to migrating your SharePoint Site. If you have any questions, please contact the RESC at: 303-445-3357, 800-595-8344, or email <a href=""></a>. <P> Reclamation Releases Final Environmental Documents on Cawelo Water District and North Kern Water Storage District Calloway Canal Lining Project
2015-03-30 15:37:00.0 <p><b>SACRAMENTO, Calif.</b> – The Bureau of Reclamation has released final environmental documents for a proposed canal lining project that will be partially funded with CALFED Water Use Efficiency Project Grants. </p> <P> <p>Under the proposed action, Reclamation will award Cawelo Water District with a $300,000 CALFED Water Use Efficiency Grant to assist in funding the lining of Reach C1of the Calloway Canal and a similar CALFED grant for $1,000,000 to assist in funding of Reach C2. Reclamation would also award North Kern Water Storage District with an Agricultural Water Conservation and Efficiency grant for $609,500 to assist in funding the lining of Reach D. The Calloway Canal is near Bakersfield, California.</p> <P> <p>The proposed project involves concrete lining of a total of 5,290 linear feet of the currently unlined Calloway Canal. Lining would reduce seepage from the canal of about 1,842 acre-feet per year. The CALFED Bay-Delta Program is a 30-year program among 25 federal and state agencies with responsibility in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. CALFED Water Use Efficiency Program grants provide matching funds for water conservation projects. </p> <P> <p>The Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact were prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and may be viewed at <a href=""></a>. If you encounter problems accessing the documents, please call 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or email <a href=""></a>.</p> <P> <p>For additional information or to receive a copy of the Final EA/FONSI, please contact <br /> Doug Kleinsmith at 916-978-5034 (TTY 800-877-8339) or at <a href=""></a>. </p> <P> GSA Releases Bldg 56 Tenant Survey
2015-03-30 14:15:00.0 The General Services Administration released the top concerns identified in the Building 56 Tenant Survey on Friday, March 27, 2015. The concerns identified also includes how GSA will address each of those issues. <P> The issues raised are: <P> <ul> <li>Building Temperatures</li> <li>Restroom Cleanliness</li> <li>Restroom Ventilation</li> <li>Landscaping</li> <li>Water Quality</li> </ul> <P> To learn how GSA will address each of the issues, please read the <a href="" target="_blank">full report</a>. <P> Reclamation Releases Final Environmental Documents for 5-year Warren Act Contract for Conveyance and Storage of Groundwater within Friant Division Facilities
2015-03-30 13:48:00.0 <p><b>FRESNO, Calif.</b> – TheBureau of Reclamation has released final environmental documents on the issuance of a five-year Warren Act contract for the conveyance and storage of non-Central Valley Project water from within Friant Division facilities to Friant Division and Cross Valley contractors located within Fresno County, California. </p> <P> <p>The source of the non-CVP water used for storage and conveyance would be groundwater pumped from existing wells beneath Flyin’ J Ranch. </p> <P> <p>The Final Environmental Assessment and Findings of No Significant Impact were prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, and are available online at <a href=""></a>. If you encounter problems accessing the documents, please call 916-978-5100 or email <a href=""></a>.</p> <P> <p>For additional information or to request a copy of the Final EA and/or FONSI, please contact Rain Emerson at 559-487-5196, (TTY 800-735-2929). </p> <P> Reclamation Seeks Public Input on Proposed Increase in Discharge from Sorrento Plant
2015-03-27 13:42:00.0 BOISE, Idaho - The Bureau of Reclamation is seeking public comment to help identify issues and concerns that may be associated with a proposed increase in wastewater flows from the Sorrento Lactalis dairy products facility in Nampa. Comments are due by April 27, 2015. <P> Sorrento is proposing to substantially increase production at the Nampa facility over the next several years. This growth in production will increase the plant?s wastewater flows from 1.2 cubic feet per second to approximately 4.5 cfs. Sorrento has submitted an application to Reclamation to accommodate this increase in discharge from its treatment plant. <P> Sorrento's wastewater flows into the Purdam Drain next to its Nampa facility. From the Purdam Drain, the discharge flows down Mason Creek to the Boise River. The quality of the discharge is governed by a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. <P> In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, Reclamation is preparing an Environmental Assessment to determine if Sorrento?s proposed action will have any significant impact on the human population or the natural environment. Reclamation will also consider whether there are any alternatives to the proposed action that would lessen or avoid impacts. The alternatives that are being considered include: <P> • No Action - Defined as denial of the application for increased discharge. <P> • The Proposed Action - Defined as approval of the Sorrento consent to use application for an increase in discharge from 1.2 cfs to 4.5 cfs to the Purdam Drain, Mason Creek and the Boise River. <P> • A New Pipeline Discharge Facility - Defined as seeking a route for a new pipeline dedicated to discharge of Sorrento?s waste to the Boise River. <P> The deadline for written comments is April 27, 2015. They can be sent to Rich Jackson, Natural Resource Specialist, Bureau of Reclamation, Snake River Area Office, 230 Collins Road, Boise, ID 83702 or by email at <P> <P> <P> <P> Reclamation Provides Updated Central Valley Project Water Supply Information
2015-03-27 12:40:00.0 <p><strong>SACRAMENTO, Calif. – </strong>The Bureau of Reclamation reports that, due to continued dry conditions, the initial 2015 water supply allocation released on February 27 for Central Valley Project agricultural contractors and municipal and industrial contractors remains unchanged.</p> <p>&ldquo;When we announced the initial allocation, we committed to providing regular water supply updates, recognizing the severe impacts of this fourth year of drought on our water users,&rdquo; stated Mid-Pacific Regional Director David Murillo. &ldquo;We continue to work closely with our customers, contractors and federal and state partners to do everything possible to deliver the maximum amount of CVP water, including the 3.1 million acre-feet of CVP water already announced for allocation to our senior water contractors and urban water users last month.&rdquo;</p> <p>A complete breakdown of the initial allocation is available at <a href=""></a>.</p> <p>The February allocation was based on a conservative runoff forecast driven by critically dry hydrologic conditions, low storage levels, water quality requirements, flow objectives, relative priority of water rights and endangered species protection measures. Currently, the California Department of Water Resources reports that the snow water content statewide is only 12 percent of average for this time of year. </p> <p>This is the second consecutive Shasta Critical Year for purposes of determining maximum contract quantities for senior water rights holders and wildlife refuges in the Central Valley. Those contractors and refuges have been put on notice that their contract supplies will be reduced due to persistent dry conditions. Reclamation remains committed to working with these contractors to meet their demands through the summer.</p> <p>Reclamation and DWR are operating the CVP and State Water Project consistent with the 2015 Drought Contingency Plan. The Plan outlines actions to help the CVP and SWP manage limited water supplies and outlines potential adjustments to regulatory requirements. The Plan may be viewed at <a href=""></a>.</p> <p>As the water year progresses, Reclamation will continue to monitor changes to hydrology and opportunities to exercise operational flexibility of the CVP that could influence the allocation. Water supply updates will be made as appropriate and posted on Reclamation&rsquo;s website at <a href=""></a>. For further information, please contact the Public Affairs Office at 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or <a href=""></a>.<u></u></p> <P> Travel Tip
2015-03-27 12:00:00.0 As a reminder, only travel expenses should be claimed on a travel voucher. Any purchases made while on TDY travel, whether business or personal, are not travel expenses and should not be included on the travel voucher. If the purchased item is reimbursable, it will need to be claimed on an 1164 just like any other misc. expense would. <P> <P> New Travel Hotline for Reclamation
2015-03-27 07:00:00.0 Deborah Nicholson,Manager, Finance and Accounting Division, announced the Finance and Accounting Division Travel Team new travel hotline to improve customer service for travel related questions and Concur Government Edition (CGE) system issues. <P> The new Hotline number is 303-445-2109 <P> "The travel team will be dedicated to answering calls during core hours of 9:30 am to 2:30 pm. Calls outside of these business hours will be addressed by the next business day. Please leave a voicemail message with your specific issue, name of the traveler, and phone number where you can be reached," Deb said. <P> The hotline was created to give Reclamation travelers an additional avenue to resolve travel issues in a more timely. "It is not intended to encourage travelers and travel arrangers to circumvent their regional Federal Agency Travel Administrator (FATA),” she added. <P> If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Robert Skaggs at 303-445-3170 or on the government cell phone at 303-819-0195. <P> Alcova Reservoir Water Level to Rise
2015-03-27 00:00:00.0 MILLS, Wyo. -- The annual filling of Alcova Reservoir will begin on Wednesday, Apr. 1, 2015, according to Deputy Wyoming Area Manager, Lyle Myler. <P> During April, the reservoir will rise approximately 10 feet to the summer irrigation operating level. The rate of rise will average approximately 5 inches per day. Upon reaching the summer irrigation operating level, the reservoir will remain at elevation 5498 feet plus or minus 1 foot until October 1, 2015. "This increase in reservoir level will be completed by May 1 to allow deliveries to the Casper-Alcova Irrigation District Canal," said Myler. <P> Recreationists and reservoir users are advised to take proper precautions associated with the rising reservoir level. <P> Yellowtail Dam and Bighorn Lake Spring/Summer Operations Public Meeting
2015-03-27 00:00:00.0 BILLINGS, Mont. -- The Bureau of Reclamation will present information about water supply conditions in the Bighorn Basin and discuss proposed spring/summer operating plans for Yellowtail Dam/Bighorn Lake at a public meeting on Thursday, April 9, starting at 1 p.m. <P> The meeting will be held in the Billings Hotel and Convention Center, located at 1223 Mullowney Lane, Billings, Mont. <P> Stakeholders and interested parties in both Montana and Wyoming are encouraged to attend the meeting and participate in the discussions. <P> For additional information, please contact Jack Conner of the Montana Area Office, Bureau of Reclamation, at 406-247-7300. <P> Bid Opening Announced for Klamath Project Lease Lands
2015-03-26 17:40:00.0 KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. - The Bureau of Reclamation announces that sealed bids for agricultural leasing of 24 parcels of federal lease lands, totaling 3,597 acres, will continue to be received until 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, April 8, 2015, at the Klamath Basin Area Office. A public bid opening will be held at the office at 10:00 a.m. the same day. <P> Open for bid on the Tule Lake federal lease lands in California are Sump 2 (seven lots) and Sump 3 (17 lots). Some lots include alfalfa while others are suitable for potatoes, onions and grain. Leasing on Area K lands is unavailable at this time. <P> Bidding instructions, lease information, a sample copy of the lease contract, location maps, and bid forms that must be used in submitting bids are available at the Klamath Basin Area Office, 6600 Washburn Way, Klamath Falls, OR 97603 and at the Tulelake Irrigation District, 2717 Havlina Road, Tulelake, CA 96134. <P> Information on the Lease Lands Program can be viewed on the Klamath Basin Area Office website at If you encounter any problems accessing documents online, please call 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339) or email <P> For additional information, please contact Mike Green, Lease Lands Program Manager, by email at or by calling 541-880-2565. <P> Brent Rhees Named Regional Director for Reclamation’s Upper Colorado Region
2015-03-26 08:59:00.0 WASHINGTON - Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Estevan López today announced the selection of Brent Rhees, P.E., as Upper Colorado Regional Director. Rhees has served as the Salt Lake City-based region’s deputy regional director since October 2007. <P> “Brent Rhees has extensive knowledge and more than three decades of experience with the complex challenges in this important region,” Commissioner López said today. "Through his strong leadership and his ability to build solid partnerships, Brent is more than prepared to lead the Upper Colorado Region into the future." <P> In his new role, Rhees will oversee all Reclamation operations in most of Utah, New Mexico and western Colorado, as well as northern Arizona, a portion of west Texas, the southeast corner of Idaho and southwestern Wyoming. The responsibility includes oversight of Reclamation programs, projects, and facilities and encompasses 62 dams with a reservoir capacity of more than 32 million acre feet, 28 hydroelectric powerplants that meet electricity needs of more than 1.3 million people, and multiple recreation opportunities for about 12 million annual visitors. <P> As deputy regional director, Rhees managed several complex and high profile issues, including the Middle Rio Grande Endangered Species Collaborative Program, dam safety modifications, implementation of the Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project, the Colorado River Salinity Control Program and completion of the Animas La-Plata Project. Rhees has 35 years of federal service. He started in Reclamation's Denver Office in 1980 as a rotation engineer, moved to the Upper Colorado Regional Office in 1981 to serve as Engineering Services Office supervisor and construction liaison. He transferred to the Provo Area Office in March 1993 to serve in several key management positions including three division manager positions and as the deputy area manager from June 2004 to October 2007. <P> Rhees is a recipient of the DOI's Superior Service Award in recognition of his significant contributions and leadership in Western water issues. He holds a bachelor's degree in civil and environmental engineering from Utah State University and is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Utah. <P> The Spring Edition of The Knowledge Stream
2015-03-26 07:00:00.0 The spring edition of <a href="" target="_blank">The Knowledge Stream</a> focuses on 2014 highlights, 2015 initiatives and research awards. Fiscal year 2014 was a year of accomplishment for scientific goals and activities within Reclamation. The Research and Development Office continues to provide critical science in such areas as water supply, advanced water treatment, renewable energy, infrastructure resiliency and invasive species, to name just a few. <P> The Knowledge Stream is the R&D office’s quarterly newsletter featuring news and information on Reclamation research and science: projects, events, innovation, results, publications and more. <P>