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2011-09-29: Work Session Meeting Minutes
VIRGIN VALLEY WATER DISTRICT
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
VIRGIN VALLEY WATER DISTRICT OFFICE
SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
Minutes of a Work Session of the Virgin Valley Water District Board held on September 29, 2011, at the Virgin Valley Water District Office at 9:00 a.m. Attending were President Karl Gustaveson, Secretary-Treasurer Kenyon Leavitt and Board Members Ted Miller and Sandra Ramaker. Vice-President Mark McEwen was not present. Also present from the VVWD were Kenneth Rock General Manager, Aaron Bunker District Hydrologist, and Mary Johnson taking minutes. Also present were Mike Chandler and Chris Mikell with Bowen, Collins & Associates, and other interested parties of agenda items.
• President Karl Gustaveson called the meeting to order at 9:01 a.m.
• Kenyon Leavitt offered a Prayer
• Sandra Ramaker led the pledge.
• Public Comment – There was no public comment at this time.
1. For Presentation and for Discussion – Bowen, Collins & Associates (BCA) will present their technical memorandum on the Basin 222 Evaluation and VVWD Groundwater Resources
• Chris Mikell presents a summary of the report findings and recommendations.
• Ken Rock discusses implications and proposes a possible plan for the facilitation of the recommendations.
• Round-table discussion by board regarding the study and its ideas.
• Assignments for the staff and Board opinions for potential agenda items for following Board meetings.
Ken began by stating this workshop would give the Board an opportunity to discuss implications and actions recommended by BCA in regards to Basin 222 and introduced Chris Mikell with BCA.
Chris began by stating that he is a hydrologist and geologist employed by BCA and continued to give background information of his self in regards to his education, employment, and personal activities. Chris also stated that Ken had hired BCA to review existing reports for Basin 222 and to validate whether they have merit and other reports from Vidler Water Company (Vidler) for Basin 221.
Chris stated that the Dixon and Katzer reports showed a much higher recharge than other reports by the USGS in the 1960s. Chris stated that Vidler’s data and work in Basin 221, along with the State Engineers acceptance of that work is helpful and could provide a partial template for how to further proceed in Basin 222. Chris explained the hydrogeology and recharge of the basin. Much of the hydrogeologic characterization by the Dixon and Katzer reports is based on geophysical surveys of the study area conducted by others. Chris explained the Dixon and Katzer reports in more detail regarding the hydrogeologic characterizations and the geophysical survey results. Chris continued to review the differences in the Dixon and Katzer reports and Vidler’s conclusions. Chris gave more detail regarding each report and the recharge estimates from the different entities. Chris further stated that the Dixon and Katzer reports did not have a lot of well data to work with and recommends that the District continue to collect data.
Chris stated that developing an accurate digital groundwater model of the Basins 221 and 222 is critical to verifying the District’s conceptual hydrogeologic model, creating cooperative and sustainable groundwater agreements and uses, and defending against unfavorable groundwater rights applications or uses. Chris further stated that he reviewed the model report completed by the UNLV Department of Geoscience to construct a digital groundwater model of Basins 22 and 221 and that the model developed is for use with MODFLOW. MODFLOW is a 3-dimensional finite difference groundwater flow model developed by the USGS. Chris went into more detail pertaining to the MODFLOW. Vidler has also developed a MODFLOW groundwater model for the Tule Desert and Lower Virgin River Valley Basin and BCA highly recommends that the District continue the development of a digital groundwater model for Basins 221 and 222 and to share information with Vidler and others.
Chris then reviewed the District’s water rights and stated that BCA opinion is that the District does not need to pursue obtaining additional groundwater rights; since the District already has more filings for paper water than the recharge estimates support, or the State Engineer is likely ever to allow.
Chris spoke of data gaps. Chris stated that the key bottom-line number – how much the perennial yield is for Basin 222- needs to be better defined and supported. The District has installed three rain gauges; however the data has not been evaluated and reported on.
Chris’ recommendations were reviewed along with the conceptual costs for study phases included in table 1 of the report. Chris highly recommends that the District have a GIS system as soon as possible.
Aaron Bunker commented on monitoring wells and the three participation gauges.
Ken reviewed the budget and money being putting into the reserves and stated that he feels comfortable that the District is able to move forward and it could be formalized with a budget adjustment.
The Board, staff and consultants continued to discuss the recharge of the basins; beginning a dialogue with the State Engineer; importance of data collection; the GIS system; the timeline; and how to proceed.
Ken proposed to proceed by keeping BCA working with the District; acquiring GIS software, with in-house personnel to operate and not hiring additional personnel at this time; beginning communication with the State Engineer; and monitoring of wells and participation gauges with Aaron.
President Karl Gustaveson adjourned the meeting at 11:34 a.m.
NOTE): The minutes of this meeting have been tape-recorded and will remain on file in the District office for a one-year period for public examination.