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Uintah Water Conservancy District Obtains Additional Acre-Feet of Central Utah Project Water from Bureau of Reclamation

Project supports future growth in the Vernal area, greatly increasing municipal and industrial water supply

Media Contact: Wayne Pullan, 801-379-1100, 01/22/2015 14:07
Lee Traynham, 801-379-1196,

For Release: January 22, 2015

Salt Lake City, Utah - On Thursday, January 22, 2015, the Uintah Water Conservancy District completed an advance payment for 3,000 acre-feet of water developed by the Bureau of Reclamation through the Central Utah Project. The acquisition will allow the District to deliver additional water to the communities of Vernal, Maeser, Naples and Jensen for municipal and industrial purposes. In celebration of the event, an advance ceremony took place in conjunction with the 2015 Uintah Basin Water Summit held in Vernal, Utah.

At the ceremony, the District presented a check to Reclamation as advance payment for an additional 3,000 acre-feet of Jensen Unit M&I water in the amount of $14,117,250.

"Providing this additional block of water to Ashley Valley is the most recent step in fulfilling the vision of the future that began with the construction of Steinaker and Red Fleet Dams," said Wayne Pullan, Reclamation's Provo Area Manager. "The Bureau of Reclamation applauds this step by our partners in behalf of the growing population of this area."

With the recent acquisition, the District more than doubled its M&I supply to a total volume of 5,000 acre-feet. This increase in water supply is in anticipation of future demand.

"I am pleased that the community leaders recognized the need for future water supply for the area, and have worked together to provide for that need," said Gawain Snow, General Manager of the Uintah Water Conservancy District. "Support from the Permanent Community Impact Board Fund was essential in funding the advance payment for the 3,000 acre-feet of M&I water. Present and future residents will forever benefit from the great foresight and planning of these community leaders. They are to be commended."

In the 1970s, a significant increase in population was anticipated in northeast Utah. The Jensen Unit of the Central Utah Project was designed to supply 18,000 acre-feet of M&I water to meet the anticipated increase in demand from Vernal and surrounding communities. Red Fleet Reservoir is the primary storage facility of the Jensen Unit. The reservoir was constructed to provide 4,600 acre-feet of irrigation water and 6,000 acre-feet of M&I water annually.

Each year, the Uintah Water Conservancy District currently receives 4,600 acre-feet of irrigation water, as well as 2,000 acre-feet of M&I water. The water is pumped from Red Fleet Reservoir by the Tyzack Pumping Plant and is treated at the Ashley Creek Water Treatment Plant before being delivered to the towns of Vernal, Maeser, Naples and Jensen for M&I purposes. In 2013, the District requested the ability to acquire an additional 3,000 acre-feet of M&I water. This additional water will allow the District to support future growth of the community and to take advantage of financial benefits associated with making an advance payment on the water.

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Relevant Link:

Uintah Water Conservancy District