Reclamation News Releases News Releases from the Bureau of Reclamation Reclamation Announces Customer Appreciation Day at New Melones Lake on Saturday, April 18
2015-04-17 17:03:00.0 <p><b>SONORA, Calif.</b> – Please join Bureau of Reclamation staff at New Melones Lake on Saturday, April 18, as we celebrate the seventh annual Customer Appreciation Day. </p> <P> <p>To show Reclamation’s appreciation for their customers, the $8 day use fee at Tuttletown and Glory Hole recreation areas will be waived for all visitors on April 18. </p> <P> <p>New Melones Lake is managed by the Mid-Pacific Region’s Central California Area Office and is located approximately 60 miles east of Stockton, Calif.</p> <P> <p>For more information, please call 209-536-9094, ext. 0 (TTY 800-877-8339); stop by the New Melones Lake Administration Office, 6850 Studhorse Flat Road, Sonora, CA 95370, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; or visit the New Melones website at <a href=""></a>. </p> <P> Reclamation Announces Spring 2015 Park Events and Ranger Interpretive Programs at Lake Berryessa
2015-04-17 14:35:00.0 <p><b>NAPA, Calif. </b>? The Bureau of Reclamation?s Central California Area Office announces spring 2015 park events and Park Ranger interpretive programs at Lake Berryessa in Napa County, Calif. All activities will be held rain or shine and are free of charge. Some programs have group-size limitations, so please contact the Park Ranger office regarding availability. Participants should wear sturdy shoes and clothing appropriate for the weather and bring water and sunscreen for daytime activities. Children are welcome, but those under age 18 must be accompanied by an adult.</p> <P> <p><b>Meet a Park Ranger at Monticello Dam!</b></p> <P> <p><b>Fourth Sunday of each month (April 26, May 24, June 28, July 26, August 23) 11 a.m. ? 2 p.m., Monticello Dam Overlook Parking (Highway 128, nine miles west of Winters)</b></p> <P> <p>Ever wonder why Lake Berryessa was created? Or how much water it holds? Or what was there before the lake? Where does the water go? Get the answers to these questions and more when you meet a Park Ranger at the Monticello Dam on the 4th Sunday of every month throughout the summer. Stop by any time between 11a.m. and 2 p.m. to learn fun facts and about this essential water resource. Please contact a Park Ranger at 707-966-2111, ext. 113 for any questions.</p> <P> <p><b>Birding 101 </b></p> <P> <p><b>Saturday, May 9, 12:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.</b></p> <P> <p><b>Meet at the Smittle Creek Day Use Area</b></p> <P> <p>Having trouble telling a titmouse from a wren, or a raven from a robin? This hike is designed to help participants make heads or tail feathers of the complex avian world. Join Ranger Todd Eggert for an informative bird-watching hike along the Smittle Creek Trail. Birders of all levels are welcome to attend this delightful hike. Bring binoculars, bird guides and, most of all, enthusiasm. This is an easy 1.5-mile round-trip hike (3/4 mile each way) with a slight elevation change. For details, directions and to RSVP, please contact Ranger Todd Eggert at 707-966-2111, ext. 113 or <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <P> <p><b>World Environment Day</b></p> <P> <p><b>Sunday, June 7, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.</b></p> <P> <p><b>Meet near Markley Cove Resort, past Monticello Dam</b></p> <P> <p>Join Reclamation Park Rangers and the Lake Berryessa Watershed Partnership for a fun lakeshore clean up event. Volunteers will walk trails and shoreline helping to clean up trash and debris at the south end of the lake. This is a great opportunity to earn volunteer hours while spending the afternoon in a beautiful outdoor setting! Food and drinks will be provided. To participate, please contact Ranger Todd Eggert at 707-966-2111, ext. 113 or <a href=""></a>. Pre-registration is required for lunch.</p> <P> <b><br /> </b> <p><b>Displays and Exhibits</b></p> <P> <p><b>May 16 through September 14: Weekends 11 a.m. - 5 p.m., Weekdays Noon - 2 p.m.</b></p> <P> <p><b>Lake Berryessa Visitor Center</b></p> <P> <p>The Lake Berryessa Visitor Center offers displays and exhibits on the history of Lake Berryessa, the Monticello Valley and the construction of the Solano Project. It also houses an exhibit of local wildlife (stuffed and mounted) showing the common and not-so-common animals found around the lake. Park Rangers are available to answer questions about natural resources, recreational opportunities, wildlife and the area?s history. Brochures, maps, trail guides and other educational information are available free of charge.</p> <P> <p>Interpretive programs and events at Lake Berryessa tie into President Barack Obama?s America?s Great Outdoors initiative (<a href=""></a>) which seeks to empower Americans to share in the responsibility to conserve, restore and provide better access to our lands and waters and leave a healthy and vibrant outdoor legacy for generations to come. Ranger-led hikes and activities also support the Department of the Interior?s <i>Let?s Move Outside! </i>initiative (<a href=""></a>) which encourages children and their families to enjoy outdoor activities that abound in every city, town and community. And where better for the public to appreciate and enjoy the great outdoors than at a Reclamation facility like Lake Berryessa?</p> <P> <p>If you would like to participate in a program and need accommodation, please contact the Lake Berryessa Ranger Department at 707-966-2111, ext. 113 at least 14 days in advance.</p> <P> <p>Please visit the Lake Berryessa website at <a href=""></a> for additional information.</p> <P> Denver Leadership Corner: The Status of the Print and Copy Unit
2015-04-17 14:06:00.0 <em>Editor's Note: This is a response to an idea and comments on <a href="" target="_blank">Ideas Pipeline</a>.</em> <P> Thank you for sharing your concerns and interest in the Federal employees and contractors who support our mission. We would like to assure you that we, the Denver Leadership Team, also share these interests and hope that we can share information that will help clarify some misconceptions. First, and foremost, we are interested in continuing to develop a transparent relationship with all of Denver’s employees, this is one of the reasons we began this ideas pipeline. <P> The Denver Leadership Team represents 10 different Reclamation organizations in Denver, all of which utilize the services of the print shop. <P> <ul> <li>Safety, Security & Law Enforcement (SSLE)</li> <li>Policy and Administration (P&A)</li> <li>Information Resources Offices (IRO)</li> <li>Management Services Office (MSO)</li> <li>Technical Services Center (TSC)</li> <li>Power Resources Office (PRO)</li> <li>Design, Estimating & Construction (DEC)</li> <li>Research & Development (R&D)</li> <li>Public Affairs</li> <li>International & Native American Affairs</li> </ul> <P> Each of these organizations is represented by Senior Leaders who work hard to represent the best interests of Reclamation and their respective organizations along with meeting our mission needs and supporting our employees. We all care very deeply about the employees we represent and their interests both in the work place and ensuring a work and life balance. We also maintain the highest degree of interest in meeting the mission of Reclamation of delivering water and generating power in an environmentally sustainable manner in as cost-efficient manner as possible. We have been engaged in discussions and analysis for some time now on the topic of providing support across Reclamation in a more efficient manner. <P> As a matter of clarity, the Print and Copy Unit are composed of three federal employees, with the production unit comprised of leased equipment operated by contractors. The contract for the production unit (equipment and service) is expiring at the end of May 2015. The future delivery of services provided by the Print Shop, for the Denver Office is being carefully considered by the Denver Leadership Team. <P> All decisions must be informed decisions and data was collected by an independent third party, who was asked to gather information about costs/budgets, services of the production unit and users of those services, which included a survey that went out to all Reclamation Denver employees and benchmarked against other Federal agencies. A considerable amount of information was learned from this effort. Trends and predictions indicate that the workload has declined over the last five years and has reached a point where we have to consider the high costs of retaining this business model or consider a more efficient one. <P> The Information Resources Office is in the process of finalizing arrangements for a new business model for print, copy and scanning services and will be announcing that process very soon. With the current printing services contract expiring, we felt compelled to assess alternative methods of obtaining our printing services. We highly value the service that the current contractor has provided. The new process will provide the ability to meet our changing needs without having to commit to the costs of leasing a large scale printing system that will soon exceed our needs. In designing new business processes, consideration is being given to the concerns you have expressed in terms of time, convenience, best practices, FOUO and customer service. <P> Our responsibility as federal employees is to be good stewards of the taxpayers’ dollars and to make business decisions that sometimes require change for the organization. We recognize that deviations from the current service delivery method cause stress, confusion, and questions about efficiency – however, the processes moving forward are informed by a great deal of research and work that is intended to result in the best interest of the taxpayer and/or in furthering the mission of the Bureau of Reclamation. Anything we can do to reduce costs and create efficiencies adds to the furthering of our mission and our taxpayer responsibilities. <P> The federal employees in the Print and Copy Center will remain in their positions to service Reclamation needs and printing, copy and scanning services will continue. The floor copiers, the paper and maintenance service to those copiers will remain unchanged. The self-service copiers and the wide format printer, currently housed within the print shop will remain. <P> Once again, thank you for sharing your concerns of the status of the Print and Copy Unit. We would encourage you to continue to read the Denver Intranet and participate in the Ideas Pipeline. <P> Are you sitting too long at your desk?
2015-04-16 06:45:00.0 If you are sitting too long at your desk, why don't you try getting out and walking at lunch? Come take a walk at lunch with other Reclamation employees on Thursday, April 23, 2015. <P> Walking is one of the simplest, safest, and most effective forms of exercise, but it can be hard to find time in your busy schedule to participate in physical activity. That’s why the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Companies are sponsoring the eighth annual National Walk@Lunch Day - to encourage busy people like you to take a walk during your lunch break. <P> Join The Bureau of Reclamation and tens of thousands of working Americans around the country on Thursday, April 23, 2015, for a 30-minute walk and take the first steps towards a healthier life. <P> This year’s National Walk@Lunch Day kickoff will take place in Building 67 on the 1st Floor from 10:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Stop by and pick up your free gift and Walking Works information after your walk, so you won’t have to carry it. <P> For questions or additional information about this healthy lunchtime event, please contact Ms. Christie Killian, Human Resources Benefits, at 303-445-3011. <P> Remember to bring your walking shoes to work on Thursday, April 23, 2015! <P> Obituary: Dennis Locke
2015-04-15 10:00:00.0 It is with much sadness that we report the death of Mr. Dennis Locke on Saturday, April 11, 2015. He was involved in a car accident near his home outside of Denver, Colorado. <P> Dennis Locke, former Chief of the Client Liaison and Product Development Division, of the Department of the Interior (Interior) Interior Business Center, retired on January 3, 2006, after 42 years of Federal Government service. Dennis received a Distinguished Service Award citation, and was named "one of the single-most influential persons associated with personnel and payroll systems in the Federal Government over the last 30 years." <P> His 42-year Federal career began in 1963 when a Bureau of Reclamation recruiter visited Michigan's Wayne State University campus, where Dennis earned a Master's degree in Structural Engineering. After employing his engineering degree at the Reclamation for 14 years, Dennis moved into Reclamation's Information Technology department. In 1980, Dennis was asked by the Reclamation's Assistant Commissioner of Administration to manage Pay/Pers, a payroll and personnel system, until a permanent replacement was found. "I went in there just on a detail for a while and never left," Dennis said. In 1990, Dennis began spearheading an effort to replace Pay/Pers with a modern, integrated personnel and payroll system, which was named the Federal Personnel Payroll System (FPPS). That system was implemented in the fall of 1997 and, with subsequent enhancements, is still the best personnel and payroll system in the Federal Government today—"thanks to the efforts of a very committed team of dedicated individuals," Dennis insists. <P> In 1998, Dennis was instrumental in leading the transfer of 65,000 Social Security Administration accounts onto FPPS, essentially doubling the number of accounts. "It was the largest successful Federal payroll migration ever accomplished in a single weekend," touted the award citation. Of the SSA migration, Dennis said, "That's what took us beyond just Interior…Social Security put us on the map." Ever resolute in giving credit where it's due, Dennis asserted, "Again, a very committed team of dedicated individuals made it happen." <P> From the start, Dennis advocated exceptional customer service, payroll accuracy, and configuration flexibility. His passion for customer service excellence is evident. "You're dealing with people's pay; you're dealing with some employees who are living from one check to another; you're dealing with single parents who are supporting kids—and it's important to get their pay to them." Dennis led the charge to establish the DataMart and WebFPPS as part of the FPPS 2000 initiative. Under Dennis' guidance and management, the e-Payroll Initiative, a component of President Bush's Management Agenda, is one of the most successful e-Gov initiatives, still in 2015. All e-Payroll migrations were accomplished on-schedule, despite the fact the agencies had very disparate payroll systems, while maintaining a 99.9 percent operational payroll accuracy rate. Although Dennis is attributed with e-Payroll's success, he insists these types of initiatives cannot be accomplished without the commitment of the employees to get the job done and unwavering, government-wide management support. "The entire Federal Personnel and Payroll Systems and Services Directorate pulled together to meet our e-Payroll commitments, which increased the number of accounts serviced by the NBC by nearly 50 percent and resulted in economies of scale to all of the NBC clients," Dennis affirmed. <P> In retirement Dennis enjoyed life with his wife, children, and grandchildren. He also spent his retirement days playing first base in a slow-pitch softball league that plays locally and nationally. <P> Dennis Locke was a champion of the modern Human Resources Line of Business era. The IBC success today stands on his shoulders and those who worked with him then and some even today. <P> Memorial information is not yet available. <P> Interior Provides Environmental Justice Online Training
2015-04-14 13:21:00.0 With Earth Day less than a week away, the Department of the Interior is offering a new online opportunity to learn about the Interior’s continuing commitment to environmental justice and the actions you can take to help. <P> Established as federal policy in 1994 under <a href="" target="_blank">Executive Order 12898</a>, and recommitted to in last year's <a href="" target="_blank">Presidential Proclamation</a>, EJ is much more than just another set of requirements. It combines civil rights with environmental protections to focus federal attention on achieving EJ for minority and low-income populations by: <P> identifying and addressing the disproportionately high and adverse effects our programs, policies and activities may have on minority and low-income populations, and ensuring minority and low-income populations have equal access to public information on, and public participation in, matters related to human health and the environment. <P> Because these EJ principles apply either directly or in spirit to just about everything we do at Interior, we worked extensively with your bureau and office EJ coordinators to design "Introduction to Environmental Justice," which is available on <a href="" target="_blank">DOILearn</a>. This course will provide you with: <P> a clear overview of EJ's history, laws and principles and Interior's EJ strategy, and specific examples and resources you and your managers need to identify and address potential EJ issues in your day-to-day activities. <P> So whether you are a full-time, permanent, seasonal, term, or part-time employee, we invite you to celebrate Earth Day and every day by enrolling in this course and helping Interior accomplish it mission in a manner that is sustainable, equitable, accessible and inclusive of all populations. If you have questions about Interior’s EJ online training, please contact Georgette A. Fogle at <a href=""></a> or at (202) 208-7565, Environmental Policy and Compliance, Office of the Secretary, Department of the Interior. <P> If you are interested in learning more about EJ, please visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>. <P> Take Your Child Event Coming to Reclamation on April 23
2015-04-13 07:00:00.0 Want to show your child or children what you do? Reclamation will be hosting a "Take Your Kid to Work" event on April 23. There will be 11 stations and presenters. <P> If you would like your child participate in the event you will need to register their children prior to 2 p.m. on April 22. The number of participants is limited to 121 children. <P> Gathering for the event begins at 8:50 a.m. on April 23. After participants find their groups, the event will kick off with a welcome and safety talk. Station tours go from 9:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. A large cylinder break will be the last station and will be conducted between 11:45 a.m. and noon. <P> There will be DREA ice cream sales and child-friendly fare in the cafeteria. Reclamation lunch bags have been ordered, are printing an activity book that coordinates with each of the tour stations, and will have healthy snacks and water available at one of the stations. <P> If your office has a brochure or other item that you would like us to put in the bags, please contact <a href="">Christi Young</a> or <a href="">Janet White</a>. <P> If you are interested in volunteering, there will be a meeting April 14, between 10 - 10:30 a.m. in the lobby of building 56 to go through the layout, safety briefing, and logistics. Volunteers are still needed for between 8:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. on the morning of the event. <P> Recycling Expanding in Building 67
2015-04-12 13:29:00.0 GSA has announced the recycling program in Building 67 will be expanding soon. GSA will be implementing single stream recycling on each floor as well as establishing a collection system for composting. The current plan is to have these new programs rolling out in the beginning of May. <P> Did you know that you can compost your waxed-lined paper coffee cup? Styrofoam can be placed in the single stream recycling. Pizza boxes are compostable; how cool is that? Toss your leftover food scraps into the composting for easy clean up. Drop all of your junk mail in paper recycling. <P> Minimize how much waste you are throwing into the landfill by taking advantage of these new recycling and composting options available in your building. Additional information will be provided throughout April. <P> If you have any questions, please contact the Building 67 Building Manager, Harvey Wong, at 303-236-2988. <P> Reclamation, Oakdale Irrigation District and South San Joaquin Irrigation Districts Resolve New Melones Pulse Flow Concerns
2015-04-10 19:25:00.0 SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Bureau of Reclamation, in collaboration with federal and state fisheries agencies, the local water districts and the State Water Resources Control Board, met to talk through the issues related to pulse flows on the Stanislaus River for steelhead and Chinook salmon. The agreement will allow the required pulse flows to be accomplished as previously scheduled, while protecting water supplies in New Melones Lake for later this summer. With this agreement in place, Reclamation has scheduled the pulse flows from Goodwin Dam to begin Saturday morning, April 11, at 0100 a.m. Releases will be ramped up from 200 cubic feet per second (cfs) over several hours to 1,500 cfs and then ramped down on Tuesday morning at 0100 a.m. to 1,300 cfs. <P> In addition to the pulse flow release the Districts will work with Reclamation on increasing water conservation this year. The water the districts conserve this year will be available to the districts in the 2016 water year. <P> Lake Tulloch is expected to have normal operations through October 1, 2015. Lake drawdown after October 1 will depend on inflows into New Melones. Calaveras County Water District’s municipal supply from Lake Tulloch will not be interrupted. <P> Reclamation, the districts and the resource agencies will continue work cooperatively to manage operations at New Melones to meet fishery resource needs through the summer. <P> “I am very proud of the work we put into resolving the pulse flow concerns,” said David Murillo, Reclamation’s Mid-Pacific Regional Director. “It shows what can be accomplished when people are willing to sit down, roll up their sleeves and work toward a common goal.” <P> For additional information, please contact Reclamation’s Public Affairs Office at 916-978-5100 (TTY 800-877-8339). <P> Hours of Operation for Reclamation Facilities at Lake Berryessa for 2015
2015-04-10 17:00:00.0 <p><b>NAPA, Calif. </b>– The Bureau of Reclamation’s Central California Area Office announces the hours of operation for Lake Berryessa in Napa County, Calif., for 2015. Lake Berryessa has plenty of water for water-related recreation, and concession-operated facilities offer camping, marina services, lodging and boat rentals. Visitors should call one of the concessions (listed below) to make their camping, lodging or boat rental reservations.</p> <P> <p><b>Dufer Point Visitor Center</b></p> <p><b>April 1 through May 17: Open Saturday and Sunday, Noon - 3 p.m.</b></p> <p><b>May 18 through Sept. 1: Open weekends and holidays, 11 a.m.- 5 p.m.; Weekdays, Noon - 2 p.m.; Closed Wednesdays</b></p> <p>The Dufer Point Visitor Center offers displays and exhibits on the history of Lake Berryessa and the Monticello Valley and the construction of the Solano Project. It also houses an exhibit of local wildlife (stuffed and mounted) showing the common and not-so-common animals found around the lake. Park Rangers are available to answer questions about natural resources, recreational opportunities, wildlife and the area’s history. Brochures, maps, trail guides and other educational information are available free of charge. Contact the Park Rangers at 707-966-2111 ext. 113 for information about park events, hikes, kayak tours and educational programs.</p> <P> <p><b>Capell Cove Boat Launch Ramp</b></p> <p><b>Open every day, 4 a.m. - 10 p.m. </b></p> <p>Other boat launch ramps are open at Markley Cove Marina, Pleasure Cove Marina, Steele Canyon Recreation Area and Putah Canyon Recreation Area.</p> <P> <p><b>Oak Shores Day Use Area</b></p> <p><b>April 1 - 30: Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.</b></p> <p><b>May 1 through Sept. 15: Open 7 a.m. - 8 p.m.</b></p> <p>During April, the Oak Shores Day Use Area will be available for public use 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Closing time will move to 8 p.m. on May 1 to correspond to the longer daylight hours.</p> <P> <b><br /> </b> <p><b>Smittle Creek Day Use Area</b></p> <p><b>April 1 - 30: Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.</b></p> <p><b>May 1 through Sept. 15: Open 7 a.m. - 8 p.m.</b></p> <p>During April, the Smittle Creek Day Use Area will be available for public use from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Closing time will move to 8 p.m. on May 1 to correspond to the longer daylight hours.</p> <P> <p><b>Eticuera Day Use Area and Olive Orchard Day Use Area</b></p> <p>Open dawn to dusk.</p> <P> <p><b>Concession Operations</b></p> <p>Markley Cove Resort, Pleasure Cove Marina, Steele Canyon Recreation Area and Putah Canyon Recreation Area continue to be open and offer a variety of recreation services. For information on operations and services offered at concession-operated facilities, please call the concession operators or visit their websites:</p> <P> <p><b>Markley Cove:</b> 707-966-2134, <a href=""></a></p> <P> <p><b>Pleasure Cove Marina</b>: 707-966-9600, <a href=""></a></p> <P> <p><b>Steele Canyon Recreation Area:</b> 707-966-9179, <a href=""></a></p> <P> <p><b>Putah Canyon Recreation Area:</b> 707-966-9051, <a href=""></a></p> <P> <p><b>Spanish Flat Recreation Area</b></p> <p>The concessionaire for the Spanish Flat Recreation Area has announced that the area will remain closed through 2015; it is not expected to be re-opened until spring 2016, depending on lake levels.</p> <P> <p><b>Berryessa Point Recreation Area and Monticello Shores Recreation Area</b></p> <p>These two recreation areas are closed until further notice.</p> <P> <p>For more information, please contact the Lake Berryessa Field Office at 707-966-2111 ext. 0 or visit the Lake Berryessa website at <a href=""></a>.</p> <P> <P> New Deputy Power Manager for Engineering Announced for Grand Coulee Dam
2015-04-10 14:19:00.0 <img src="" width="200" height="255" border="1" align="left" hspace="5" vspace="5" alt="Doug Anderson Named Deputy Power Manager of Grand Coulee Dam"/>GRAND COULEE, Wash. - The Bureau of Reclamation's Pacific Northwest Region announced that Doug Anderson has been selected as the new Deputy Power Manager for Engineering and Project Management at Grand Coulee Dam. He replaces Scott Ross. <P> In his new position, Anderson will oversee the Engineering Division, Project Management Division and the Environmental Resource Department which includes lands management, archeology, history, geology and environmental compliance. He will begin his new role April 19. <P> Currently, Anderson works for the Bureau of Reclamation at Grand Coulee Dam as the supervisory mechanical engineer for the Engineering Division, a position he has held since March 2011. <P> "Since coming to Grand Coulee, Doug has had a positive impact on our project with his collaborative attitude, friendly manner and just do it style," said Power Manager Coleman Smith. "His extensive experience in engineering and management will be a great asset in his new position." <P> Much of Anderson's career has been spent in engineering and management positions with Apple, Hewlett-Packard, Rockwell and Mountain Gear. He has served as a chief executive officer, chief operations officer and adjunct instructor. <P> "While Reclamation is very focused on delivering water and power, there has been a re-emphasis on the caretaking and management of Grand Coulee Dam," said Doug Anderson. "I look forward to taking a more active part in the future of this historical treasure." <P> Anderson has a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Montana State University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Montana. He and his wife reside in Grand Coulee and have three children who live in the Northwest. <P> Grand Coulee Dam, completed in 1941, is a multipurpose facility and a key feature of Reclamation's Columbia Basin Project. It is the largest hydropower producer in the U.S. at an average of 20 billion kWh annually. The John W. Keys III Pump-Generating Plant, located adjacent to Grand Coulee Dam, provides irrigation water to approximately 670,000 acres of farmland in the Columbia Basin Project in central Washington. <P> <P> <P> Reclamation Releases Draft Environmental Documents for West Kern Water District Water Use Efficiency Project
2015-04-08 17:15:00.0 <p><b>SACRAMENTO, Calif.</b> – The Bureau of Reclamation and the West Kern Water District have released an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the West Kern Water District Water Use Efficiency Project. </p> <P> <p>The proposed action is for Reclamation to provide up to $300,000 of financial assistance to the water district in support of their project through the CALFED Water Use Efficiency Grant Program. Reclamation provides cost-shared funding on a competitive basis for on-the-ground water conservation and energy efficiency projects. </p> <P> <p>The project will increase rebates offered on new clothes washers with WaterSense Specification designations and will install new water meters with Automated Water Meter Reading in the water district. Work to install the water meters is expected to occur from July to December 2015 and July to December 2016.</p> <P> <p>Automatic Meter Information Management Technology used with the AMR on industrial businesses within the water district’s service area would improve leak detection and focus repair efforts. The water district’s pipeline water delivery system covers the largest area of any retail municipal and industrial water provider in California. The area covered and length of the pipe distribution system is approximately 170 miles, which presents a challenge of timely meter reading, leak detection and leak repair.</p> <P> <p>Implementing the project will save approximately 1,456 acre-feet of water each year, which is approximately five percent of the water district’s average annual water supplies. Indirect benefits of the project include reducing energy consumption used to pump water for use in the water district by 815,360 kilowatt-hours per year and 25,578 therms per year, respectively; a reduction in greenhouse gases from reduced pumping; and increased flexibility in water and energy resources management. </p> <P> <p>The EA and FONSI were prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and are available 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, please contact Andrea Meier, Natural Resource Specialist, at 916-978-5041 (TTY 800-877-8339). </p> <P> How should an employee handle an issue with rental cars if they do not feel safe with what they are being given?
2015-04-08 15:43:00.0 Reclamation does not ask or expect employees to work in unsafe conditions. Employees are encouraged to take an active role in their own safety, by identifying hazardous conditions and seeking solutions that reduce risk. <P> Ultimately, employees have a personal responsibility for their own safety should they feel an unsafe condition exists with the rental car being assigned. <P> Unfortunately, rental car companies have free will in offering the make and model of the compact vehicles available to rent; there is no specific contract or requirement that specifies what make and model may or may not be classified as compact. If the employee chooses to decline the offered vehicle for safety or other reasons (weather, too many dents or scratches, bald tires, read about a vehicle recall, misclassified as compact, etc.), the employee should request a different vehicle. If the company does not have a comparative make and model compact vehicle, the employee may cancel the agreement and switch rental car companies. The employee must remember to switch to a rental car company that offers a government rate for a compact vehicle. <P> When completing the travel voucher, the employee will need to change the rental car expense amount, which will trigger a justification due to a different amount being claimed. The employee will need to provide an explanation of the rental car change in the justification section of the voucher. Since the supervisor ultimately approves the voucher, it is recommended that the employee contact their supervisor to discuss the changes to their approved voucher. <P> The Department of Interior travel policy is clear in directing travelers to use compact vehicles for environmental reasons. The current policy does not provide for vehicle upgrade for safety accommodations. Reclamation has elevated this concern for safety accommodations regarding rental vehicles to the Office of Policy and Financial Management, DOI, for consideration of change to existing policy. <P> Everyday Ethics: Post-employment Restrictions: Rules for the Road
2015-04-08 13:18:00.0 Did you know that when you retire or leave government service, there are ethics rules that guide your behavior even after you leave? This article highlights the restrictions contained in 18 U.S.C. 207 that will apply to you even after you leave executive branch service. You should seek advice from your agency?s ethics official on how these post-employment restrictions apply to you, both before and after you terminate Government employment. Please know that the Ethics Program provides lifetime advice to Federal employees even after they leave Reclamation. You may always find out who to contact after you leave on our external Ethics website: <a href="" target="_blank"></a>. <P> Restrictions on post-Government employment do not bar you from working for any particular employer. The restrictions are designed to address certain representational activities that involve, or may appear to involve, the unfair use of your prior Government employment. How these restrictions apply to you depends upon your position and your duties during your Government service. <P> As an executive branch employee: <P> <ul> <li>You are barred permanently from trying to influence any Federal agency or court, by communications or appearances on behalf of someone other than yourself or the United States (i.e., "representational contacts"), on a matter that has parties (such as a contract, grant, or lawsuit) if you worked on that matter as a Government employee.</li> <li>You are barred for two years from making representational contact or appearances about a matter that was pending under your official responsibility during your last year of Government service, even if you did not personally participate in it.</li> </ul> <P> For additional questions, please contact Reclamation?s Deputy Ethics Counselor: <P> Erika Armani<br /><br /> 303-445-2727<br /> Room 1418, Bldg 67 <P> <P> Bureau of Reclamation to Host Meeting of the Bighorn River System Issues Group
2015-04-08 09:00:00.0 BILLINGS, Mont. -- The Bighorn River System Issues Group will meet on Thursday, April 23, in the Lovell Community Center, located at 1925 Highway 310, Lovell, Wyoming, from 10:00 a.m. to approximately 3:00 p.m. <P> The Bureau of Reclamation will present information about water supply conditions and comments received regarding the operating criteria for Yellowtail Dam/Bighorn Lake. Other issues and interests particular to Yellowtail Dam and Bighorn Lake will also be discussed. <P> The Bighorn River System Issues Group was formed in 2007 to enhance stakeholder engagement. The Group identifies and discusses topics of interest with local, tribal, state, and federal entities that are responsible for managing the Bighorn River system resources. Previous meeting discussions and topics of the Group are available on our website at <a href=""></a>. <P> For additional information about the meeting, please contact Jack Conner of the Bureau of Reclamation at 406-247-7300. <P>