13 October | 2023



The 2023 summer irrigation season is concluding. Fall maintenance is now upon us. Check out the articles below for events and news effecting the District.


In this edition:

  • A Canal Fall Maintenance Closure Notification
  • 2023 Election Update
  • U.S. Supreme Court Petition Update
  • Fall Maintenance Priorities
  • Foreclosures
  • Executive Director D.C. visit report
  • Upcoming Events
  • News Stories Affecting the District
  • What is on our Desk

NOTICE: A Canal Headworks Gate Closure on 16 October 2023

Klamath Irrigation District will close the diversion gates to the A Canal on the morning of 16 October 2023 as we begin to prepare for fall maintenance on the structure. Irrigation deliveries for 2023 will stop with the closure of the gates.

For most of 2023, K.I.D. operated the A Canal at reduced efficiencies due to several factors, including a malfunction of the electronic controls on one of the 6 diversion gates at the headworks. This fall, after fish salvage operations are complete and the fore-bay is dewatered, we will begin repairs on the gate to perform delicate work before the ice and freezing temperatures set in.

Klamath County residents may notice water retained in some of our canal systems late into the fall and early winter. In some cases we are retaining this water as part of our maintenance plan, in other cases we are measuring seepage and loss over time, and in select areas we are exploring ground water recharge effects.

Visit our Website

2023 Election Update

Nominations for the 2023 election of directors for Zones 3 and 4 closed on 10 October 2023 as per Oregon Revised Statue 545.137(3). Only 1 nomination packet for each zone was received by the District elections officer.

Therefore, as per Oregon Revised Statute 545.137(4), Certificates of Election were issued for the sole nominee in each zone.

The 2024 Directors of Klamath Irrigation District will remain:

Zone 1: Ty Kliewer

Zone 2: Rodney Cheyne

Zone 3: Grant Knoll

Zone 4: Dave Hamel

Zone 5: Fred Simon

Klamath Irrigation District's Update on our two petitions to the U.S. Supreme Court

Oregon Water District Tells Justices Tribes' Rebuttal Falls Flat - Law360

An Oregon water district doubled down on its argument that the U.S. Supreme Court should review a Ninth Circuit ruling dismissing a water delivery suit, telling the justices that two tribes' contentions otherwise are unpersuasive and that the federal government agrees with its position.

"Solicitor General Prelogar's brief admits that the Ninth Circuit made a serious error in this critical area of law," Frederick Richard Yarger of Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell LLP, an attorney representing the irrigation district, told Law360 in a statement. "The ramifications are sweeping for anyone with water rights in the West, underscoring the need for Supreme Court review."

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Klamath #1

This petition should be on the list of cases the Court will discuss at its 27 October conference. If they deny review at this conference, it is likely we will see an order to that effect on Monday 30 October. If they don’t deny review on 27 October, the case will likely be re-listed for consideration at the next conference on 3 November and considered further. 

Klamath #1 This case presents a single question the United States Supreme Court Justices: whether Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 19 supplants an

aggrieved party’s right to judicial review of agency action under the Administrative Procedure Act (“APA”).

The government concedes the Ninth Circuit’s answer to this question was “incorrect” (meaning this case should not have been dismissed) and agrees the underlying Ninth Circuit precedent is “mistaken.” As the government explains, suits for judicial review of agency action implicate the “public rights principle,” which protects the ability of a plaintiff, like Petitioner, to “challeng[e] the lawfulness of federal agency action.” The United States also agrees the Ninth Circuit’s erroneous precedent could “burden and complicate” APA litigation beyond the water context.

Barbara March explores this in the Summer edition of The Ag Mag in "Water Rights Across the West"

Read K.I.D.'s reply brief in detail

K.I.D.'s initial petition can be viewed here

Klamath #2

“According to the Ninth Circuit, the federal government has power to remove a motion to enforce state-adjudicated water rights from the state court that is currently adjudicating those rights to federal court, if enforcement of the adjudicated rights may affect (1) out-of-state parties that never filed claims or contests in the adjudication or (2) how the federal government meets obligations imposed by federal law. But these circumstances are features of virtually every state water administration proceeding. In effect, therefore, the Ninth Circuit’s ruling enables the federal government to prevent the state courts that are empowered to conduct general stream adjudications from administering and enforcing the very water rights they are adjudicating.”

Read the full Klamath #2 petition here

Combined Klamath #1 and #2

Once the proceeding reaches federal court, Klamath #1 allows any Native American tribe with an interest in the litigation to shut it down. Consequently, the combined effect of the Ninth Circuit’s rulings leaves water users in the American West no reliable forum to comprehensively determine and administer their water rights. This eviscerates the McCarran Amendment’s purpose of enabling water to be allocated in accordance with judicially enforceable water rights determined in comprehensive general stream adjudications. The result is a lawless frontier in which water is allocated by unelected federal agency officials whose decisions cannot be judicially reviewed.

Water RIghts Across the West

by Barbara March

"Souza said the McCarran Amendment, which was

enacted into law by Congress in 1952 and is named for Senator Pat McCarran of Nevada. “Describes what’s going

on in the Klamath Basin. The Feds have continuously tried

to sidestep this piece of legislation.”

Yet, according to KID’s Supreme Court petition, since the adjudication order was issued, the federal government

has consistently failed to comply, diverting stored water in Upper Klamath Lake for non-irrigation purposes and depriving KID and its landowners of the property/ water

they are entitled to under their adjudicated water rights."

© 2023 RB9 Publications - All Rights Reserved Website Development - Terry Miller GuCherry Blog by Everestthemes

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The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals is the largest across the United States. Decisions of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals affect all states in its jurisdiction and influence the other Districts decisions.

Klamath Irrigation District Priority Maintenance Tasks for Fall 2023 and 2024

  • Minimize property damage at active seeps
  • Install water flow sensors and controls (2020 WaterSmart Grant)
  • Repair A Canal Headworks (Level Sensors / Gates)
  • Repair A Canal Tunnel Voids
  • Repair C-Siphon Discharge
  • Move A Canal Boom Logs
  • Evaluate Reclamation's 2023 CAT II Recommendations for the Olene Flume
  • Repair C4 Head Gate
  • Repair G Siphon Conduit A&B CAT II
  • Measure C-Siphon Spill at LRDC
  • A Canal Headworks Routine Maintenance
  • Engineer design for D (Barker) Spill
  • Install Starter Upgrades @ Stukel Pumps
  • Install Climate Control S. Poe Pump Station
  • Address E Canal Siphon Leak – Confined Space
  • Replace A Canal Headworks Floor Seal inside fish screen
  • Replace A Canal Headworks Bulb Seal
  • Restore easement on #1 Drain at Roberta Dr.
  • #1 & #5 Drains – Remove / Replace structure for measurement
  • Lubricate C-Hydro / Maintenance
  • Reface G-D Drop
  • Reface G Siphon Inlet
  • Assist USBR with fish salvage
  • Routine Bridge Repairs and Replacements
  • Routine Road Repairs
  • Headquarters Maintenance
  • Routine Turnout replacements
  • Digital Water Ordering System Implementation


As per Klamath Irrigation District financial policy and agreements with the Klamath Basin Improvement District, we have regrettably begun the foreclosure proceedings on 22 properties within the districts.

This is the worst part of our duties and responsibilities. The District does not want to pursue these actions against our communities; however, it is a necessary part of our duty. Foreclosure is the most drastic measure the District can take, and we have offered numerous opportunities to resolve these issues. In each instance, the action is required as the individual in default has failed to respond to K.I.D.'s attempts to mitigate the issue.

This stressor adds to Barbara March's articles in The AG Mag referenced later in this newsletter.

K.I.D. Executive Director Report - D.C. Visit

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While on vacation, K.I.D.'s Executive Director made a short stop in Washington D.C. to express appreciation for those in the Federal Government who are working with the District to find solutions to the complex problems in the Klamath Basin.

During this trip, an almost no-notice visit to Congressman Cliff Bentz's office resulted in a 45-minute session with the Congressman, a personalized tour of the Nation's Capital Building, and a greater appreciation of the Congressman's focus and priorities. During the meeting, we discussed the 2023 irrigation season, the District's request for title transfer of the facilities the District has paid for and has been operating since 1955, in addition to the current and future Endangered Species Act issues facing the Klamath Reclamation Project.

The tour of the Capital Building hosted by the Congressman's staff (a fellow Oregon Duck) was Gene's first time through the House and the Rotunda. The amount of history, native culture, acknowledgment of agriculture's importance to the Republic, and the visual messaging to the representatives who represent the people in the House is in every inch of the building. An article on this tour by Gene may be published in an upcoming edition of Basin AG News.

Gene continued his visit with other staff members including the staff of Congressman LaMalfa, Congresswoman Chavez-Deremer, the House Committee on Agriculture, and the House Committee on Natural Resources.

Upon leaving the House, Gene traveled to the Senate. Of course, he stopped by Senator Merkley's and Senator Wyden's offices to express thanks for all they do for the people of the Klamath Basin. Additional thanks were bestowed upon Senator Riesch staff. Gene then stopped by the staff of the Senate Committee Office for Agriculture and Nutrition. He also stopped by the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources to express thanks to Senators Joe Manchin and John Barrasso. Unfortunately, the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs was closed early on a Friday afternoon; Gene missed an opportunity to talk with Senator Gary Peters and Rand Paul or their staff as he had planned.

After wandering freely around both the House and Senate offices, committee rooms, and the Capital Building, Gene set off to engage members of the Biden Administration staff. For those who have been to D.C., you will note that quickly moving to these offices is nearly impossible. Unfortunately, each executive branch agency turned Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Souza away at security. As the sun set on the Capital, our Executive Director exfiltrated D.C. with eight tokens of appreciation not delivered to the intended recipients.

Additional tokens have been presented to the employees and Directors of Klamath Irrigation District and several of our regional supporters.

The token Gene provided to each individual was a coin/beverage opener. The image of the token is below.

The challenge coin/beverage opener represents the struggles of our communities. Many of us remain inspired to push this raging dumpster fire uphill daily despite feeling our communities are receiving a similar burden as Sisyphus.  

Of note, on the face of the coin, you will find the icon for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and a dumpster on fire. Upon close examination, you will find the dumpster is labeled. Klamath Irrigation District, our communities, and the people we serve are being hardened in this continuous Federal dumpster fire. Many other Districts or groups across the United States could be similarly expressed by this symbolism.

On the back of the coin, Gene suggests the Federal government began its assault on the Klamath Basin under the Clinton Administration with Bob Anderson’s political appointment to the Department of the Interior’s solicitors office collided with the Klamath Basin. 

The bottle opener assists one in rehydration after a day of pushing our rocks. These tokens of appreciation were presented to many for their assistance in pushing their rock uphill every day and assisting them in staying hydrated.

Upcoming Events

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Klamath Reclamation Project 2023 After Action Review

14 November at 1pm

Klamath Water Users Association, in partnership with member districts and the Klamath Project Drought Response Agency will host a 2023 Operations "After Action Review".

The event will occur on 14 November 2023 at 1pm in the Merrill Civic Center. District managers and directors, along with other representatives, will provide their perspective on the just completed irrigation season and be available for public input.

An after-action-review is a technique for improving process and execution by analyzing the intended outcome and actual outcome of an action. The intent is to identify practices to sustain, improve or initiate.

The draft agenda includes:

A short presentation

Panel Discussion

Presubmitted questions from Klamath Reclamation Project patrons or community members

Questions from attendees for the panel.

If you are unable to attend, please submit your questions to the panel to [email protected]

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A 2019 report on PFAS initiated the desire for the airfield to reach out to the community for input and cooperation.

The initial 2019 reporting on the issue is available here.

Kingsley Field Air National Guard Base Restoration Advisory Board (RAB)

Wednesday, October 18, 2023 

5:30-7:30 PM 

Crater Lake-Klamath Regional Airport Terminal

3000 Airport Way

Klamath Falls, OR 97603

RAB meetings are open to the public.

Handouts, including the agenda, presentation slides, and acronym list will be available at the meeting. 

K.I.D.'s Executive Director is a member of the Restoration Advisory Board.

Webinar: 3 Ways Companies are Capitalizing on Climate Intelligence

Details: October 18, 2023 9:30 - 10:15 am PT *this webinar will be recorded and shared with registrees after the event Pest control has always been a consideration for growers, but climate change has made it an even more prominent issue. Increased heat and moisture, longer growing seasons, declines in predator populations, etc.

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Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board Meeting in Klamath Falls, OR October 23-25, 2023

Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board sent this bulletin at 10/10/2023

The Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board will hold a board meeting virtually and in-person on October 23-25, 2023.

·   October 23, from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

·   October 24, from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm

·   October 25, from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm


The agenda and staff reports for the meeting are now available.


The meeting will be held at: 

Running Y Resort

5500 Running Y Rd

Klamath Falls, OR 97601

Directions: https://goo.gl/maps/Zy34WpKUuDHFx2r6A

The public is welcome to attend in-person or view/listen to the meeting through the following methods:

YouTube Streaminghttps://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0dl-TOwLt4Sp--i1KEa_OA. Please note that there may be a slight delay when streaming the meeting content.



·   Oct 23: Dial 1 669 900 6833, when prompted, enter ID number: 851 7302 0607 and passcode: 162756

·   Oct 24: Dial 1 669 900 6833, when prompted, enter ID number: 881 9760 7442 and passcode: 673912

·   Oct 25: Dial 1 669 900 6833, when prompted, enter ID number: 871 5457 5188 and passcode: 725146


Public comment

OWEB encourages written or verbal public comment on any agenda item. Written comments will be provided to the board before the meeting.


All written comments and requests to make verbal comments to the board can be submitted on our website at https://www.oregon.gov/oweb/about-us/Pages/public-comment.aspx or can be emailed to Nicole Bettinardi at [email protected].


The deadline for submitting written comments and requests to make verbal comments is 4:00 pm ThursdayOctober 19, 2023.

Verbal comments:

·   Must be limited to three minutes.

·   Will be heard in the public comment periods.

·   Please provide the following information:

1.  Your first and last name

2.  The agenda item you will comment on

3.  Whether you plan on coming to the meeting in-person or virtually

4.  If you plan to call into the meeting, provide the phone number you will use. 

Note if the phone is a landline and you prefer to be scheduled for public comment early to avoid long distance phone call charges.


If special physical, language, or other accommodations are needed for this meeting, please advise Nicole Bettinardi as soon as possible, and at least 48 hours in advance of the meeting.


Evening Reception Hosted by OWEB

When: Tuesday, Oct 24, 5:30-7:00 pm

Where:  Running Y Resort, 5500 Running Y Rd, Klamath Falls, OR 97601

Details: Open to the public. This is an opportunity to meet with the board and staff and local partners and to learn more about the partners’ projects in your community

Oregon Water Law Conference - 26-27 October

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For our 32nd year, we continue the tradition of gathering the most active, diverse, and experienced Oregon water law experts to address the issues of the day. 

Our program will provide an update on recent water-related legislative and administrative developments, along with discussions of the key issues driving water policy. Practitioners from a wide array of viewpoints will address complex water supply and management challenges in several of Oregon’s watersheds, along with other recent decisions involving water distribution, water access, storage permits, and hydropower licensing.

We hope you will join us for this excellent program.

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Klamath Water Users Association

2 November KWUA Directors will host a 2024 planning session.

14 November at 1pm - 2023 After Action Review

15 November at 2pm - rescheduled November Directors Meeting

Visit the KWUA website for the latest information

WaterWorks September 2023

Klamath Irrigation District

9 November 10am - Board of Directors Meeting

Let's get cooking

Produce growers' resource days 6 November at 9am

Three sessions are scheduled. The first session is 6 Nov. in Klamath Falls, at the Klamath County Fairgrounds, building #2 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m., with lunch provided.

Additional sessions are offered Nov. 8 in Burns, and Nov. 10 in Baker City. These sessions are tailored for produce growers and aspiring growers, and costs are covered through the SARE grant.

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Department of Interior ESA Consultation and Restoration Meetings

Klamath Irrigation District's Executive Director is attending numerous meetings with the Department of Interior focused on the on-going Endangered Species Act consultation, restoration project funding opportunities, and stakeholder engagements.

Please contact the District office if you desire insight into this process, the status of the efforts, and a District perspective.

Oregon Water Resources Congress

OWRC Operations & Maintenance Workshop

October 24-25 - Hood River, OR

Registration Available

Draft Agenda Available


Oregonians for Food & Shelter (OFS)

2nd Annual Conference and Fields & Forests Gala

November 1 - Salem, OR

Credits available for pesticide recertification

Registration Available

Agenda Available


National Water Resources Association (NWRA)

2023 Annual Conference & Leadership Forum

November 8-10 - San Antonio, TX

The NWRA Annual Conference is a great opportunity to network with water community leaders from across the West and hear from issue experts on topics impacting our sector. As a member of OWRC, you are also a member of NWRA and can register at the member rate. CLICK HERE to view the current agenda and register today!  


OWRC Annual Conference - Save the Date!

November 27-29 - Hood River, OR

More information to come

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News Stories Affecting Our District

Crazy Making

by Barbara March

"Gene Souza, Klamath Irrigation District Director: “I see burnout, people have sold, are selling or downsizing because they can’t keep going mentally. I’m concerned for the mental health of the people I serve. The perception that you’re under attack goes into your psyche. You think you’re doing something good for your country and the world, putting food on people’s plates but people resent you for it or make it nearly impossible for you to do your job. It’s crazy making.”

© 2023 RB9 Publications - All Rights Reserved Website Development - Terry Miller GuCherry Blog by Everestthemes

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Ag Burnout

by Barbary March

"The tragedy of the Klamath Basin mirrors the greater ag community...In agriculture, we're taught that being busy and working all the time is a badge of honor...there is a moral pressure to work for a cause without adequate focus on our own health and financial well-being. It's toxic thinking that we need to sacrifice everything to be true to this work..."

© 2023 RB9 Publications - All Rights Reserved Website Development - Terry Miller GuCherry Blog by Everestthemes

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Basin Ag News

Take a walk through the farmers market this weekend or step onto a local farm and you'll see an abundance of fresh, beautiful produce. Fall is a special time of year in the Klamath Basin, when the weather is starting to cool and farmers are hard at work harvesting the fruits of their labor.

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From the farms to our schools: Klamath County kicks off food program

Klamath County School District students will eat melons grown in Klamath Falls this month as a kick-off to the district's Farm to School Featured Food program.

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Governor Kotek Visits Lake, Klamath, Jackson Counties on One Oregon Tour

Press Release - October 9, 2023

Governor and First Lady stop in Christmas Valley, Lakeview, Bly, Klamath Falls, White City, Medford, Ashland, Talent, Central Point

Salem, OR—Last week, Governor Tina Kotek and First Lady Aimee Kotek Wilson visited communities in Lake, Klamath and Jackson counties on stops 30, 31, and 32 of the One Oregon Listening Tour.

"Each of the communities we visited has unique strengths and challenges. My job as Governor is to help every community be successful,” Governor Kotek said. “Hearing from people directly, in their home communities, is a key first step to strong partnerships.”

In Lake County, the Governor and First Lady started with a visit to Christmas Valley to discuss economic development and renewable energy with local leaders. They were then on to Lakeview, where they met with local leaders and participated in a roundtable discussion about behavioral health care hosted by Lake Health District. They also enjoyed viewing the night sky in the Dark Sky sanctuary being proposed for parts of Lake, Harney, and Malheur counties.

In Klamath County, they had lunch at The Bread Wagon in Bly and discussed natural resource issues with Becky Hatfield-Hyde, the co-founder of the Upper Klamath Basin Agriculture Collective, and Paul Simmons with the Klamath Water Users Association. Hatfield-Hyde also serves on the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission.

The Governor and First Lady then drove to Klamath Falls, where they were briefed on the Swan Lake Energy Storage Project, met with early childhood leaders at Klamath Family Head Start, and toured the local Oregon Department of Human Services office to meet the staff and thank them for their work. The day wrapped up with a dinner with local elected leaders. The next day started off with a breakfast with leaders of the Klamath Tribes.

In Jackson County, the Governor and First Lady began with a visit to Rogue Community College’s workforce training campus in White City, focusing on their programs for EMTs, nurses, and dental assistants. After lunch with local government leaders, they attended a behavioral health roundtable with community partners in Medford where they discussed successes and challenges to serving youth and families experiencing addiction or mental health crises. They then drove to Ashland for some First Friday shopping, a tour of a state-of-the-art memory care facility, and dinner.

Before heading back to Salem, they stopped in Talent for a 2020 Labor Day wildfire recovery discussion with Latino residents and community organizations. The visit wrapped up with a cheesemaking tour at Rogue Creamery in Central Point.

High interest rates are hitting agriculture industries the hardest: report

Agriculture news for industry leaders. Covering technology, environmental regulations, labor, global trade, manufacturing, supply chain issues, commodities, and more.

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Vilsack Calls for Farm Bill Extension, Pushes Back on Potential USDA Program Cuts

Highlighting various USDA Rural Development programs used in a rural community, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Tuesday pushed back against possible program budget cuts while also stressing the need for Congress to think creatively about passing a farm bill.

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Climate Coup Alert: CEQ Proposes to Transform NEPA - Competitive Enterprise Institute

In recent comments to the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), 24 state attorneys general led by Iowa AG Breanna Bird warn that CEQ's July 31 Proposed Rule to revise National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) implementing regulations would unlawfully "turn an informational, procedural, outcome-neutral statute into a transformative tool to shape our economy and society to the Administration's [...]

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Newsroom | Bureau of Reclamation

Bureau of Reclamation

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What is on our desk

The Crimes Behind the Seafood You Eat

China has invested heavily in an armada of far-flung fishing vessels, in part to extend its global influence, Ian Urbina writes. This maritime expansion has come at grave human cost.

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Yearly rescue of stranded fish in Deschutes River moved up to the weekend due to low flows; volunteers needed

October 11, 2023

By KTVZ News Sources

The annual fall rescue of thousands of fish stranded in a side channel of the Deschutes River was to begin next Monday, but has been moved up to this weekend after event planners learned that flows are dropping faster than anticipated, due to reduced river recharge and drier geological conditions resulting from drought.


The rescue will now start this Saturday, and organizers say volunteers are urgently needed to help accommodate the last-minute date change.


With the wind-down of the growing season in Central Oregon, local irrigation districts are reducing flows in the Upper Deschutes River below Wickiup Dam in order to fill the depleted reservoir for the following irrigation season.


The Deschutes River Conservancy, in partnership with the Deschutes Basin Board of Control, technical support from Mt. Hood Environmental and crucial help from dozens of volunteers in the community, are rolling up their sleeves in a collaborative fish rescue.

Read more…


Corps studies need for hydropower

October 10, 2023

By Sarah Brown

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Portland District, is undergoing multiple studies to evaluate and improve conditions for ESA-listed fish across the Willamette Basin. In September, the USACE held two public sessions last month to inform the public about a study it is performing to determine federal interest in the continuation of hydropower production in its Willamette Valley System (WVS).


The study is a response to the Water Resource Development Act of 2022 (WRDA22) (section 8220), which requires the USACE to determine whether there would be any national benefits to deauthorizing hydropower at one or more federal dams in the Willamette River Basin. The system consists of 13 dams and reservoirs between Detroit and Cottage Grove, including Green Peter and Foster.


“We’ll be looking at several scenarios in the report to Congress,” said Kathryn Tackley, technical lead of the project. “These include partial deauthorization, meaning the turbines would provide station service power for the dam and for our facilities only; so no power would be marketed. The second scenario is full deauthorization and decommissioned penstock, and the third scenario being evaluated is full deauthorization with reconfigured penstock, meaning that we reconfigure the penstocks to allow for the continual release of water through those outlets.

Read more…


History of irrigation in Central Oregon on tap

October 10, 2023

By The Nugget

The new season of the Three Sisters Historical Society's (TSHS) Fireside Evenings will open with a presentation by Steve Lent titled "Water for a Thirsty Land - The Development of Irrigation in Central Oregon." It will take place on Monday, October 16 at the Sisters Fire Hall, 301 S. Elm St. The presentation will be at 7 p.m. with doors opening at 6 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door and free to TSHS members. Seating is first-come, first-served.


Lent has been the historian at the Bowman Museum in Prineville for many years and has a collection of over 5,000 historical photos. Using photos and narrative, Lent will show the development of the irrigation projects in Central Oregon and the impact it had on the land and water usage that allowed a major farming boom in the region.


The story begins in the late 1800s when Central Oregon was experiencing a large influx of homesteaders. Hundreds of enthusiastic settlers came to get their free piece of land. Unfortunately, most of the land available for settling was very arid and water was scarce. Entrepreneurs began to construct irrigation canals and a dam on the Deschutes River at Crane Prairie to store water.

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Oregon counties receive $1.7M to address nitrate contamination

October 10, 2023

By George Plaven

Two counties in northeast Oregon are getting $1.7 million in federal aid to address nitrate contamination in residential wells.


The funding, part of a $1.7 trillion congressional spending bill, will go to Umatilla and Morrow counties where officials are seeking long-term solutions for elevated nitrates in the Lower Umatilla Basin Groundwater Management Area, or LUBGWMA.


The federal aid will be used to develop and implement a standardized well testing program for domestic wells as well as develop a feasibility plan for permanent solutions such as public drinking water systems.

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Owyhee Reservoir carryover portends solid 2024 supply

October 9, 2023

By Brad Carlson

Even before snow season hits its stride, Owyhee Reservoir has nearly enough water to supply irrigators through next year.


Capacity in the reservoir near Adrian, Ore., is sufficient to supply irrigators for two seasons under normal circumstances. It was nearly half full as the 2023 season neared its last day, Oct. 13. Volume to be stored between irrigation seasons is “very, very promising for next year,” said Bruce Corn, an Owyhee Irrigation District board member.


Since the reservoir likely will be 48-49% full after the 2023 season, supply should be adequate for next year even if this winter’s runoff is low, he said.

Read more…


New Oregon critical groundwater rules set stage for additional restrictions

October 9, 2023

By Mateusz Perkowski

Oregon regulators have updated the process for designating critical groundwater areas, where irrigation pumping can be curtailed, setting the stage for new restrictions in additional basins.


The state’s Water Resources Commission recently approved revisions to critical groundwater designation rules, which hadn’t been changed in more than 30 years and were determined to be “misaligned” with statutory language.


Implementing the new rules does not mean the state agency is actually creating critical groundwater areas, but it’s a necessary step to make such designations possible, said Doug Woodcock, interim director of the Oregon Water Resources Department, which is overseen by the commission.

Read more…


As water becomes less accessible, Oregon farmers are trying to adapt

October 9, 2023

By Crystal Ligori

On an unusually rainy August afternoon, about 40 people were huddled under a pair of tents on the edge of Oregon State University’s Vegetable Research Farm. The group of farmers, researchers and home gardeners had made its way to Corvallis to learn more about a technique called dry farming.


“We have a couple acres of land and we’re looking for what suitable crops would be to grow on it,” said home gardener Lauren.


She and her husband, Tim, have only had their property for a year, and he said part of their interest in dry farming is the desire to streamline the process. “We’re not there all the time, so if we have to water less, that’s great,” Tim said.

Read more…


Oregon seeks $27M for dam repair it says resulted in mass death of Pacific lamprey fish

October 8, 2023

By Associated Press

Oregon officials are seeking more than $27 million in damages over dam repairs they say killed more than half a million Pacific lamprey fish in what they’ve described as one of the largest damages claims for illegal killing of wildlife in state history.


In a claim filed in Douglas County Circuit Court on Friday, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said that recent repairs to Winchester Dam in the southern part of the state resulted in the death of at least 550,000 juvenile Pacific lamprey, an eel-like fish key to local ecosystems and of cultural significance to many Native American tribes in the region. The fish is also listed as a protected species in Oregon.


“The North Umpqua River’s diverse fish populations are unique within Oregon and are of considerable social, cultural, and economic importance locally and regionally,” the fish and wildlife department said in a news release. “The damages claim seeks reparation for the loss of a valuable public resource.”

Read more…


Some say Central Oregon Irrigation District board elections could be a game-changer

October 7, 2023

By Michael Kohn

A changing of the guard could be coming to Central Oregon Irrigation District as four out of five seats on its board of directors are up for election next month.


The open seats will represent Terrebonne, Redmond, Bend and Powell Butte. Only Central Oregon Irrigation district patrons are eligible to vote in the Nov. 14 election, which is separate from state and local elections held one week earlier. Central Oregon Irrigation District, a senior water rights holder in the Deschutes River basin, is the largest irrigation district in the region by number of patrons. The district provides water for around 3,500 patrons who irrigate 46,000 acres, mostly in areas between Bend and Terrebonne. Changes and improvements to the way water is delivered to patrons can impact how much water remains available for other districts and the Deschutes River.

The election could usher in board members who will more aggressively seek changes in the way water is delivered, said Caleb Thompson, owner of Sungrounded Farm, a vegetable farmer near Terrebonne.

Read more…


Massive dam removal project spurs hope in the Klamath Basin

October 6, 2023

By Cassandra Profita

Longtime river runner Bill Cross climbed into a raft just below JC Boyle Dam in Southern Oregon.


The guided trip in August 2022 was scheduled to coordinate with PacifiCorp’s power production schedule, so the guides waited to launch until the utility started sending water from the reservoir above through hydroelectric turbines and into the river below.


As it floated downstream, the raft splashed through dozens of rapids with names like “Satan’s gate” and “hell’s corner,” sending waves of water over the rafters in toasty 90-degree heat.

Read more…


Little Did I Know: The dam history of the Deschutes River

October 6, 2023

By Scott Elnes

I have some questions about the dam history of the Deschutes River. 


The river originates at Little Lava Lake in the Deschutes National Forest. And while most rivers cut their own path, the Deschutes had a much more dramatic and sudden change. 


You see, it originally flowed around Pilot Butte from the east, but about 188,000 years ago, a lava flow filled in that channel and the river was diverted into a new channel along the west side where it runs today.


For countless generations, Native American tribes like the Warm Springs, Wasco and Paiute, have called this land home. They used the Deschutes as a source of sustenance, its waters for fishing and even transportation. 

Read more…


Biden memo directs US agencies to restore 'healthy and abundant' salmon runs in the Northwest

October 5, 2023

By AP News Staff

In a move that conservationists and tribes called a potential breakthrough, President Joe Biden has directed federal agencies to use all available authorities and resources to restore "healthy and abundant" salmon runs in the Columbia River Basin.


Biden’s order stops short of calling for removal of four hydroelectric dams on the Lower Snake River in Washington state, an action that tribes and conservation groups have long urged to save threatened fish populations. But it directs a host of federal agencies to do all they can to restore salmon and honor U.S. treaty obligations with Pacific Northwest tribes.


"Wild salmon, steelhead and other native fish populations in the Columbia River Basin are essential to the culture, economy, religion and way of life of tribal nations and indigenous peoples,’' Biden said in the six-page presidential memo released last week.

Read more…


‘The lifelines and backbones of most rural communities’: Facing threats from climate change, irrigation districts look to modernize

October 3, 2023

By Kale Williams

Standing above a pear orchard on the east side of the Hood River Valley, Steve Pappas can only guess how long the irrigation canal at his feet has been there. 


“I don’t know the exact date but it’s from the early 1800s,” he said, gesturing toward the shallow canal dug into the hillside. 


Pappas is the manager of the East Fork Irrigation District, which provides water for more than 10,000 acres of farms and orchards dotted with pear, apple and cherry trees. And Pappas is facing a problem endemic across the west as irrigation managers confront a pair of thorny problems: aging infrastructure and water shortages made worse by climate change. 

Read more…


Most well-water users in northeast Oregon counties still in the dark about toxic contamination

October 3, 2023  

By Alex Baumhardt

The Oregon Health Authority has failed to meet Gov. Tina Kotek’s expectation on well water testing for harmful contamination in northeast Oregon, rural advocates said.


Local organizers with the nonprofit environmental and social justice group Oregon Rural Action said the state’s testing campaign failed to meet Kotek’s expectations set in May that all wells would be tested by the end of September.


“The governor came out and looked people in the eye and said this would be dealt with, that testing would be done by Sept. 30,” said Kaleb Lay, an organizer for the group.

Read more…


Central Oregon cities poke holes in state plans to tighten groundwater rules

October 2, 2023

By Emily Cureton Cook

Oregon water managers are considering the most consequential water policy changes the state has seen in decades. These changes would crack down on new groundwater rights, making it more difficult for people to drill wells. Advocates say this is critical to protect the environment and ensure future water supplies, but opponents, such as leaders from Central Oregon’s fast-growing cities, say the state is going too far.


The Oregon Water Resources Department wants to overhaul its rules for issuing new groundwater rights. Under the proposed changes, applicants would have to show at least five years of data to prove the groundwater is stable in the area they want to access. State law since the 1950s has called on water regulators to protect “reasonably stable” aquifer levels, but officials have never defined what that means, until now.


Regulators also want updated criteria to define how wells could impact surface water. That’s because wells siphon away flows that would otherwise bubble up to feed rivers and streams. Oregon’s past approach to groundwater rights was much more permissive. For decades, regulators allowed people to pump without knowing if water was sustainably available. As a result, farmers in some places take more than nature replenishes.

Read more…

How building bridges within supply chains can unlock opportunities in regenerative agriculture | GreenBiz

Land to Market's Wyatt Ball discusses building bridges between brands and farmers, and turning land into a force for good.

Read More


Governor Kotek Appoints New Leader of Department of Agriculture, Submits List of Appointments for Senate Confirmation

Press Release - October 11, 2023

Portland, OR—Today, Governor Tina Kotek announced that she has appointed Lisa Charpilloz Hanson, executive director of the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB), to lead the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA). The Oregon Senate will take up her confirmation as permanent director in November.

“Oregon faces complex natural resources challenges across our state that require data-driven, resilient solutions,” Governor Kotek said. “Lisa Charpilloz Hanson brings decades of experience working with natural resource communities to meet the needs of Oregonians across the state. I look forward to seeing her great work and leadership at the agency.”

Lisa Charpilloz Hanson (she/her) brings two decades of leadership, policy direction, and program administration to the role, including 15 years as deputy director at ODA. Charpilloz Hanson has experience leading, developing, and directing the budget requests and legislative agendas of both ODA and OWEB. Charpilloz Hanson also serves on the Oregon State University College of Agricultural Sciences Leadership Academy Advisory Board.

“It is an honor to return to the Department of Agriculture and serve Oregonians,” Lisa Charpilloz Hanson said. “Oregon’s diverse agricultural and food sectors have changing needs in our changing environment. I am excited to work with the team at the department to enhance the natural environment and the value of working lands. I look forward to working with food and ag producers, strengthening existing partnerships and building new ones, while celebrating the diversity of Oregon agriculture and continuing to introduce customers in Oregon, the US and around the world to Oregon’s high-quality products.”

Charpilloz Hanson’s start date is December 1. Bill Ryan will continue as acting director of ODA until then.

A headshot of Lisa Charpilloz Hanson can be found here.

The Governor also submitted a list of state board and commission appointments to the Oregon Senate for confirmation. The Senate Committee on Rules is scheduled to consider the nominations during November Legislative Days, which run from November 6 through November 8.

The full list of nominees is available here.

More information about state boards and commissions is available here.!

Biden-Harris Administration Makes $36 Million Available for Fish Passage and River Restoration Projects as Part of President’s Investing in America Agenda

Projects will be part of a five-year, $200 million Bipartisan Infrastructure Law investment to restore aquatic ecosystems

Press Release - October 11, 2023

DETROIT — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today announced the availability of up to $36 million through President Biden’s Investing in America agenda for fish passage projects across the nation that address outdated, unsafe or obsolete dams, culverts, levees and other barriers fragmenting our nation’s rivers and streams. Since 2022, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law has invested $73 million in 79 projects through the Service’s National Fish Passage Program. These funds are investing in our nation’s infrastructure and natural resources by reconnecting fragmented rivers, improving fish migration, and enhancing local economies.


An inter-agency task force is supporting an efficient and collaborative approach to investing a total of $2 billion in fish passage projects under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law across the Departments of the Interior, Transportation, Agriculture, and Commerce. These projects and funding opportunities are available at the recently updated Fish Passage Portal.


“Waterways have been reconnected, fish migration is improved, and local economies have been stimulated through the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law,” said Service Director Martha Williams. “With $36 million in additional investments in fish passage projects, communities will benefit from dam removals, culvert replacements, and reduced flooding. The Service will continue to work with Tribes, state and local agencies, non-governmental organizations and conservation partners to reconnect important aquatic systems.”


The National Fish Passage Program, facilitated by the Service’s Fish and Aquatic Conservation Program, will prioritize projects that will:

·   Maximize benefits to priority species and habitats.

·   Provide sustainable fish passage.

·   Leverage regional or watershed priorities for habitat restoration, fish passage or aquatic connectivity.

·   Enhance community resilience to climate change , address public safety hazards and provide other benefits such as job creation or recreational fishing opportunities.

·   Support or engage with disadvantaged communities.

·   Coordinate on species and watershed priorities with Tribes and states.

·   Be supported by partners, affected stakeholders, and the local community.


The National Fish Passage Program has decades of proven experience implementing infrastructure projects with partners on a voluntary basis to improve the health of the nation’s waterways, reconnect rivers, improve climate resilience and enhance local economies. The program provides financial, technical and planning assistance to Tribes, communities, other agencies and landowners to help remove barriers and restore rivers for the benefit of fish and people. It also advances President Biden’s America the Beautiful Initiative, a decade-long challenge to pursue a locally led and voluntary, nationwide effort to conserve, connect, and restore our nation’s lands, waters, habitats and wildlife.


Since 1999, the program has worked with over 2,000 local communities, states, Tribes and private landowners to remove or bypass 3,500 barriers to fish passage and has reopened access to over 64,000 miles of upstream habitat and over 193,000 acres of wetland for fish and wildlife species.


Interested parties should submit a Letter of Interest to the appropriate National Fish Passage Program regional coordinator, via email, by Nov.17, 2023. Letters of Interest should include the project name and location, a brief description of the project objectives and benefits, the expected requested funding amount, and a statement of interest in applying for the funding opportunity. More information, including a list of National Fish Passage regional coordinators, may be found at Grants.Gov or by visiting the National Fish Passage Program’s informational website.


Press Release - October 5, 2023


Washington, D.C. – Oregon’s U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley, Ron Wyden, and Representative Andrea Salinas (D-OR-06) are leading the bicameral Soil Conservation And Regeneration Education (Soil CARE) Act. Farmers, ranchers, and federal land personnel continue to face ongoing challenges to their land from extreme weather events like floods and droughts. This bill would ensure producers have the latest information and tools available to help rebuild degraded lands, reduce reliance on inputs, and increase profitability and resilience to extreme weather. Salinas will introduce the House version of this bill next week.


“Dynamic lands and ecosystems have defined Oregon for ages and have supported Oregon’s world-class agriculture industry,” said Merkley. “As climate chaos continues to make the West hotter and dryer, it’s important our farmers, ranchers, and land stewards have the resources and tools needed to keep their lands adaptable and resilient. This bill is a necessary step in keeping supporting farmers and ranchers across America.”


“Farmers across the country continue to feel the devastating effects of the climate crisis. It is essential they be equipped with the tools they need to fully benefit from existing federal programs that will help,” Wyden said. “As the author of the Soil Health Demonstration Trial program in the last Farm Bill, I am all in for providing more tools to improve the resiliency of crops and the health of our planet.”


“As we continue to suffer the effects of extreme weather in Oregon, it’s critical that our local farmers and producers have the tools they need to adapt. That includes helping them implement the latest regenerative agriculture and soil health management practices,” said Congresswoman Salinas. “This legislation will ensure USDA personnel and third-party service providers are properly trained and equipped to help producers rebuild degraded lands and increase profitability and resilience.”


Training and education regarding regenerative agriculture has been critically underfunded, but education and technical support are crucial components to successfully implementing conservation efforts in the country. The Soil CARE Act invests in expanded technical assistance and provides U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) staff and personnel with the latest knowledge, tools, and innovations to help producers produce and boost healthy soil. Next week, Salinas will introduce companion legislation in the House.


The Soil CARE Act would:

·   Develop and deliver curriculum within one year of passage;

·   Develop a nationally-available online training curriculum;

·   Encourage all relevant USDA personnel (NRCS and TSPs) to complete online training within three years of the Farm Bill passage;

·   Hold annual soil health workshops and training sessions;

·   Dedicate resources to providing required continuing education for all NRCS and TSPs; and

·   Require NRCS to use the training curriculum to develop soil health education materials for producers. 


The Soil CARE is endorsed by over 180 organizations and businesses, including OrCAN (Oregon Climate and Agriculture Network) and Oregon Association of Conservation Districts (OACD), as well as members of the Regenerate America coalition which includes the American Sustainable Business Network, Oregon Association of Conservation Districts, Oregon Climate and Agriculture Network, the Natural Resources Defense Fund, Green America, and Earthjustice.


“Farmers and ranchers across the country are proving that through biological soil health management and regenerative practices such as cover crops, no-till, and holistic grazing, they can build healthy soil faster than ever thought possible–reducing costly chemical inputs, sequestering carbon, lessening impacts from floods and droughts, and increasing biodiversity. But while producers are ready to adopt these approaches, they don’t have access to the education and training needed to do so. The Soil CARE Act would provide the much-needed training to NRCS staff and technical service providers, so they can better support and train farmers and ranchers. We are grateful to Senators Merkley, Wyden, and Congresswoman Salinas for their leadership on soil health as a key solution to the climate, health, and water crises we face,” said Finian Makpeace, co-founder of Kiss the Ground, convener of the Regenerate America Coalition.


Bill text, as introduced in the Senate, can be found here.

A bill summary can be found here

EPA Announces $4 Million Now Available for Technical Assistance Providing Evaluation Support for EPA Grant Funding Recipients

EPA seeks applicants to the Promoting Readiness and Enhancing Proficiency to Advance Reporting and Data (PREPARED) Program for three-year cooperative agreements

Press Release - October 5, 2023

WASHINGTON – The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will make up to $4 million available for technical assistance providers with program evaluation expertise that will help support and enhance the data, reporting, and evidence-building capacity of EPA grant recipients representing small, underserved, and/or Tribal communities.


The Promoting Readiness and Enhancing Proficiency to Advance Reporting and Data (PREPARED) program will provide awards for technical assistance that helps enhance EPA grant recipients’ ability to generate the data and information necessary to evaluate program outcomes and improve impacts for communities. EPA intends to make awards over three years to as many as eight recipients.


Data, reporting, and evidence-building are vitally important responsibilities for EPA grant programs. However, many EPA grant recipients face capacity challenges in engaging in these activities. Small, underserved, and/or Tribal communities that are eligible for EPA grants sometimes choose to pass on funding opportunities in part because of these capacity challenges. With this Cooperative Agreement, EPA seeks to fund technical assistance providers to equip communities with strategies, tools, and training that enhance their capacity for data, reporting, and evidence-building.


Applications are due Nov. 30, 2023, by 11:59 PM Eastern Time (ET), and the Request for Application notice is now posted on www.grants.gov under Funding Opportunity Announcement EPA-I-R-OCFO-01.


EPA is committed to implementing strategies designed to help small and underserved communities address data and reporting requirements for EPA grants. Also, consistent with principles defined under the EPA Policy for the Administration of Environmental Programs on Indian Reservations, the EPA is committed to working with federally recognized tribes in enhancing capacity to carry out program responsibilities affecting tribal communities and the health and welfare of the populace, including capacity for data, reporting, and evidence-building.


EPA will host two informational webinars for potential applicants, currently scheduled for Wednesday, October 11, 2023, 3:00 p.m.-4:30 p.m. ET and Thursday, October 26, 2023, 6:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m. ET. Registration instructions and more information on the funding opportunity are available on EPA’s PREPARED webpage.

Deputy Secretary Beaudreau to Step Down at Interior Department

Press Release - 10/4/2023

WASHINGTON — After serving more than two years as Deputy Secretary and nearly ten at the Department of the Interior, Deputy Secretary Tommy Beaudreau announced that he will depart his role at the end of October.


Deputy Secretary Beaudreau has helped lead the Department’s efforts on many of its highest priorities and most pressing issues, including ensuring the sustainability of the Colorado River system, implementation of billions of dollars through the President’s Investing in America agenda, tackling the climate crisis by standing up clean energy infrastructure, conserving and protecting America’s public lands, upholding trust and treaty obligations to Indian Country, and promoting the public’s trust through the reforms of the Department’s Law Enforcement Task Force.


“Tommy’s impact on the Department can be seen in every aspect of our work,” said Secretary Deb Haaland. “He has been a valued counselor and friend. His legacy will continue as we carry on our work to implement President Biden’s historic Investing in America agenda and steward our public lands and waters for the American people.”


“I love the Interior Department, and it has been the greatest honor and responsibility of my career to serve as Secretary Haaland’s deputy in the Biden-Harris administration,” said Deputy Secretary Beaudreau. “I will always cherish the opportunities I’ve had to work with the best career staff in federal service and diverse communities across the United States to help figure out solutions to some of the most challenging problems facing our country.”


There are 40 million people, seven states, and 30 Tribal Nations who rely on the Colorado River Basin for basic services, including drinking water, electricity and irrigation. Deputy Secretary Beaudreau led discussions with the seven Basin states to reach a historic, consensus-based system conservation proposal to protect the stability of the Colorado River operations while new guidelines are developed for the long-term sustainability of the system.


Deputy Secretary Beaudreau has overseen the Department’s implementation of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the Inflation Reduction Act, which are the most transformative infrastructure and climate investments in history. In July, the Department launched a new interactive map to track the billions of dollars invested so far from this historic law in over 1,450 projects nationwide. The tool is the first of its kind from a cabinet agency.


Deputy Secretary Beaudreau served as the Department’s point person on the Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council amid the Biden-Harris administration’s historic all of government progress on permitting utility-scale renewable energy and transmission projects. During his time at Interior, the Department advanced the President’s vision to protect millions of acres of public lands and waters, including withdrawing Bristol Bay and the entire federal Arctic Ocean from future oil and gas leasing, protecting the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness from mining, and issuing a proposed rule to provide maximum protection to more than 13 million acres of special areas in the National Petroleum Reserve – Alaska. He has facilitated locally led conservation efforts by finding common ground across state and local governments, Tribes, landowners, conservation groups, and recreation and sporting communities as part of the Administration’s America the Beautiful initiative and through historic investments in ecosystem restoration and nature-based solutions.


As chief operating officer for the Department, Deputy Secretary Beaudreau was charged with building the Department’s capacity to serve the American people. This work included chairing the Department’s Law Enforcement Task Force, which has developed updated policies to advance safe, transparent, accountable and effective policing practices while building public trust and strengthening public safety. Deputy Secretary Beaudreau also worked to make the Department’s critical information systems resilient and secure in the face of rapidly evolving cyber threats.


Deputy Secretary Beaudreau originally joined the Interior Department in 2010 during the Deepwater Horizon crisis. He served for nearly seven years at the Department during the Obama-Biden administration, including as the first director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Acting Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management, and Chief of Staff to Secretary Sally Jewell.

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Mark Webb to be next Oregon Environmental Quality Commissioner

A new voice to advance DEQ’s mission to protect, maintain and restore Oregon’s environment

Press Release: October 3, 2023

STATEWIDE, OR – The Oregon Senate confirmed Sept. 29 Governor Tina Kotek’s appointment of Eastern Oregon nonprofit director Mark Webb to the Oregon Environmental Quality Commission.


EQC Chair, Kathleen George said, “I am honored to welcome Mark and confident he’s a solid addition to our slate of commissioners. I look forward to incorporating his extensive experience and perspectives to advance the state’s leadership in environmental protection.”


The commission is a five-member panel appointed by the governor to set policy for the Department of Environmental Quality. Commissioners are appointed to four-year terms and are confirmed by the state Senate.


“I believe that strong, vibrant communities and healthy landscapes are inseparably linked,” Webb said after his confirmation. “So, I deeply appreciate the opportunity to serve on the Environmental Quality Commission as it will enable me to work in areas I care about and in ways that matter for Oregonians across the state.”


Webb currently serves as executive director for Blue Mountains Forest Partners a 501(c)(3) private nonprofit. His term begins Oct. 5.


Terms for former commissioners Greg Addington and Molly Kile ended in September 2023.

USDA Invests $65 Million for Conservation and Climate Action on Private Lands as Part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s Investing in America Agenda

Conservation Innovation Grants Will Help Farmers, Ranchers, and Forest Landowners Reduce Methane Emission – a Key Driver of the Climate Crisis

Press Release - August 31, 2023

WASHINGTON, Aug. 31, 2023 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced the availability of $65 million through two funding opportunities for new tools, approaches, practices and technologies to further natural resource conservation on private lands through the Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) program. Of this funding, $25 million will be delivered through President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, the largest clean energy and climate investment in history, which directed USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to prioritize CIG On-Farm Trials projects that use diet and feed management to reduce enteric methane emissions from ruminants, as well as other projects that have climate mitigation benefits.  


“This year’s Conservation Innovation Grants competition is unique in that we’re able to increase available funds because of President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, which will fund projects that address climate change, with a particular focus on solutions to reduce enteric methane emissions, a potent greenhouse gas,” said NRCS Chief Terry Cosby. “Science and innovation are the keys to helping farmers, ranchers and forest landowners succeed in the face of global challenges, like climate change. We’re eager to see what innovations come to fruition and can be integrated into our programs and tools, thanks to this influx of new funding.”  


This announcement is part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s Investing in America agenda, a key pillar of Bidenomics, to grow the American economy from the middle out and bottom up, by rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure, driving over $500 billion in private sector manufacturing investments to date, creating good-paying jobs, and building a clean energy economy to tackle the climate crisis and make our communities more resilient. The Inflation Reduction Act provided an additional $19.5 billion for NRCS conservation programs, including $25 million for this year’s CIG On-Farm Trials. NRCS is committed to supporting farmers, ranchers, private landowners and Tribal Nations, to build resilient agricultural operations, combat climate change, ensure equity, and support voluntary conservation on working lands.  


Two separate CIG funding opportunities are now available on grants.gov: $50 million through CIG On-Farm Trials and $15 million is available through CIG Classic.  

For CIG On-Farm Trials, this year’s funding priorities are:  

·   Irrigation water management technologies 

·   Nutrient management 

·   Feeding management and enteric methane reduction 

·   Grazing lands 

·   Soil health demonstration trials 


For CIG Classic, this year’s funding priorities are: 

·   Forestry 

·   Habitat conservation and restoration for wildlife and invertebrates 

·   Managing agricultural lands to improve local water quality 

·   Energy conservation 

·   Economics 

·   Strengthening conservation through indigenous knowledge 


Strong consideration will be given to proposals that include Historically Underserved entities and individuals. 

This opportunity is open to all domestic non-federal entities and individuals based in the United States for projects carried out in the U.S. 

Applications are being accepted now through October 30, 2023. 


About CIG 

CIG is a competitive grants program. Through creative problem solving and innovation, CIG partners work to address our nation's water quality, water quantity, air quality, soil health and wildlife habitat challenges, all while improving agricultural operations. CIG contributes to USDA’s efforts to address climate change through climate-smart agriculture.  


CIG On-Farm Trials projects feature collaboration between NRCS and partners to implement on-the-ground conservation activities and then evaluate their impact. Incentive payments are provided to producers to offset the risk of implementing innovative approaches. 


The Soil Health Demonstration (SHD) Trial component of On-Farm Trials focuses exclusively on implementation of conservation practices and systems that improve soil health. 

A critical element of each On-Farm Trials project is the project evaluation. Partners must propose robust scientific approaches to their On-Farm Trials, resulting in data and analyses of the environmental, financial, and to the extent possible, social impacts of the trials. 


NRCS will use the results of On-Farm Trials project evaluations and analyses to explore the development of new NRCS conservation assistance, guidance documents, technical tools, and conservation practice standards or modifications to existing ones. 

Since 2004, CIG has invested $411.8 million to fund 842 innovative projects and 435 partners.


More Information 

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit usda.gov.  


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The Oregon Agricultural Heritage Commission is recruiting for a Commission seat to represent farmer and rancher interests.

Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board sent this bulletin at 08/22/2023 02:37 PM PDT

The Oregon Agricultural Heritage Commission is recruiting for a Commission seat to represent farmer and rancher interests. Commissioners will serve as volunteers for a 4-year term and will be appointed by the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB).


The State Legislature established the Oregon Agricultural Heritage Program (OAHP)–a working lands program–in 2017 to provide voluntary incentives to farmers and ranchers to support practices that maintain or enhance both agriculture and natural resources such as fish and wildlife on agricultural and working lands.


OWEB administers the Oregon Agricultural Heritage Program and appoints the Oregon Agricultural Heritage Commission members.


The term for the seat is January 2024 through January 2028; commissioners are eligible to serve two consecutive terms. An application form is available on the OAHP website. The application will be open until October 20, 2023.


Applications may be emailed to Nicole Bettinardi, or sent by mail. Mailed applications must be postmarked by October 15, 2023 in order to be considered for a position. Prospective candidates are encouraged to review the OAHP website and to contact Taylor Larson, [email protected], 971-701-3248 for further information.


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Increases to the CWSRF Principal Forgiveness Limits

DEQ - May 12, 2023

Now that the proposed CWSRF rules have been adopted, the program is excited to announce there are significant changes to the amount of subsidization offered to borrowers as principal forgiveness. The supplemental funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law requires the program to increase the maximum subsidization that an eligible borrower can receive per state fiscal year from the historic cap of $500,000 to no more than $2 million or 50% of the loan amount, whichever is less.


Loans executed prior to May 14, 2022, which is the date the BIL went into effect, are not eligible to receive increased subsidization. Even under the amended rules, borrowers will still need to, and additional subsidization is subject to the availability of funds and readiness to proceed. fully executed after April 1, 2023, will be eligible for 100% forgivable planning loan up to $100,000. All loans – planning, design, and construction – that receive principal forgiveness must be eligible under the CWSRF.


Environmental Justice

The changes to the CWSRF program’s rules now allow the program to expand the definition of affordability criteria to include considerations of environmental justice. Environmental justice is ensuring the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, immigration status, income, or other identities with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies that affect the environment in which people live, work, learn, and practice culture. The environmental justice movement recognizes some communities face disproportionate environmental harms causing these communities to be exposed to additional burdens that impact their health and well-being. In Oregon, House Bill 4077 asserts that “No one group of people, including racial, ethnic or socioeconomic groups, should bear a disproportionate share of the negative consequences resulting from industrial, municipal and commercial operations or the execution of federal, state, local and tribal environmental programs and policies.” The program intends to promote and implement ways to advance environmental justice and equity.


The program will use environmental justice metrics to inform how it supports communities in Oregon. These metrics will be used to conducti outreach, provide technical assistance, score and rank loan applications, and award principal forgiveness. The environmental metrics are intended to identify communities that are economically distressed, health or pollution burdened, or face additional challenges because of their population size. “Economically distressed” communities are those with low income or high unemployment. “Health burdened” communities are defined as those elevated health risks. “Pollution burdened” communities are those located near an impaired waterbody or a facility with a compliance violation. The program also recognizes that small communities face greater administrative and economic burdens in developing and paying for water pollution control projects. By utilizing CWSRF loans, public agencies can invest in communities that have been neglected and can make a substantial impact in improving clean water infrastructure and clean water access.


How to Apply for a CWSRF Loan

Project and borrower eligibilities

·   To learn if your community and project is eligible for future funding, submit a Loan Information Request Form anytime.


Applications are accepted year-round, but projects will be reviewed, scored, and ranked after submission deadlines:

·   December 11, 2023


For more information, please contact the project officer for your area.


Special Districts Association of Oregon - State and Local Cybersecurity Grant Program – Application Process Now Open

October 9, 2023

The registration and grant application process for the State and Local Cybersecurity Grant Program (SLCGP) is now open! We highly encourage all districts with eligible cybersecurity projects to apply. 


The goal of SLCGP is to assist state and local governments with any of the following: 

·   Advanced Endpoint Protection (AEP) 

·   Data Backup, and Recovery Testing 

·   Multifactor Authentication Capability (MFA) 

·   Migrating your website domain and email to the .gov extension 

·   Consulting and Planning Services to implement any of the above 


Applicants for SLCGP funds must submit a completed application, which describes the nature of your project, your current cybersecurity posture and capabilities, and how your project aligns with Oregon’s Cybersecurity Plan. 



1.   The important first step in the process is to complete the grant registration by November 15, 2023. This will allow OEM to ensure that your project is eligible for funding prior to going through the application process. 


As part of the registration process you will be asked for your Unique Entity ID (UEI). This is a new federal and state requirement for receiving grant funds. 


If you do not have a Unique Entity ID yet, you will need to apply for a number at SAM.gov.  


2.   Once your registration is approved, the next step is to complete the project application by January 10, 2024. 


Detailed application instructions are available online.  



Hear more about the program from our recent webinar with Cinnamon Albin, Interim Deputy Chief Information Security Officer with the State of Oregon. Watch webinar now. Please note, the audio quality is low due to connectivity issues during the webinar.   



SLCGP Technical Assistance 

Enterprise Information Services 

Cyber Security Services (CSS) 

[email protected] 


SLCGP Grant Program 

Kevin Jeffries 

Grants Coordinator 

Oregon Department of Emergency Management 

Cell (971) 719-0740 

[email protected] 




Federal Funding Opportunities This Fall through NOAA

Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board sent this bulletin at 10/02/2023

There are several federal funding opportunities this fall for fish habitat work through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) that may be of interest to you. While some of these opportunities are referred to as coastal grants, the definition of coastal areas eligible for project funding is quite broad and includes areas located along inland rivers and streams with a significant impact on coastal and ocean resources. Anadromous fish habitat work anywhere in the state may be eligible.


Here is a list of active funding opportunities:

·        Restoring Fish Passage through Barrier Removal Grants


Application deadline: October 16, 2023. Project funding range: $1 million to $20 million

·        Restoring Tribal Priority Fish Passage through Barrier Removal Grants


Application deadline: November 8, 2023. Project funding range: $300,000 to $12 million.

·        Transformational Habitat Restoration and Coastal Resilience Grants | NOAA Fisheries 


Application deadline: November 17, 2023. Project funding range: $1 million to $25 million

·        Coastal Habitat Restoration and Resilience Grants for Tribes and Underserved Communities  


Application deadline: December 19, 2023. Project funding range: $75,000 to $3 million.

·        Building Tribal Drought Resilience With Support From The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA)


Application deadlines: Letters of Intent submission deadline is November 2, 2023

Application submission deadline is February 15, 2024. Project funding range: up to $700,000


If you have any question about these funding opportunities, please email the NOAA Fisheries contact listed for each grant program and let your OWEB contact know if there is anything we can do to help.


OWEB Staff Contact: Eric Williams, Grant Program Manager

971-345-7014 | [email protected]





 OWEB Water Acquisition Grant Offering

Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board sent this bulletin at 10/02/2023

The Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB) is now accepting grant applications for the Water Acquisition program. The purpose of this program is to increase the amount of water instream to address the conservation needs of habitats and species and to improve water quality. For more information about this program, please visit OWEB’s Water Acquisition webpage.


Applications are due at 5 pm on Tuesday, January 9, 2024.

Applications must be submitted via OWEB's online grant application system.


Eligibility Requirements

Proposals eligible for funding consideration will a) increase the amount of water instream to improve fish and wildlife habitat and b) voluntarily limit the use of a water right. These proposals could be through Oregon Water Resources Department (OWRD) voluntary reduction or transfer programs, OWRD Instream programs or other mechanisms.

Projects must result in Legally or Contractually Protected Instream Flows to address either:

·   Identified conservation needs of fish and wildlife or their habitats as determined by the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife (ODFW).

·   Improving water quality in an area designated as Water-Quality-Limited waterways by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ).


Actions Eligible for Funding

The Water Acquisition grant program supports the planning and implementation of transactions involving an interest in a water right from a willing seller. Water acquisition grants can support a range of project activities from:

·   Permanent water right transfers.

·   Temporary water right leases.

·   Other voluntary strategies by irrigators to keep water instream.


For more examples of eligible project types, please see the Water Acquisitions Program Guidance.



If you have questions about the OWEB Water Acquisition grant offering, please review the Water Acquisitions Program Guidance or contact:

Brian Wolcott, Water Acquisitions and Capacity Program Coordinator 971.345.7010 [email protected]

OWEB Water Acquisition Grant Offering (govdelivery.com)




Funding Recommendations for OWEB Spring 2023 Open Solicitation Grant Offering

Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board sent this bulletin at 09/28/2023

Applications and Recommendations

At its October Board meeting, OWEB will consider awarding over $12 million in restoration, technical assistance, stakeholder engagement, and monitoring grants.  In response to the Spring 2023 Open Solicitation Grant Offering, OWEB received a total of 110 grant applications from across the state seeking almost $19 million in funding for restoration, technical assistance, stakeholder engagement, and monitoring projects. As part of the review and award process, Regional Review Teams (RRT) evaluate all submitted applications and provide funding recommendations to OWEB staff. OWEB staff then provide funding recommendations to the OWEB Board who grants final funding approval.


For the Spring 2023 Open Solicitation Grant Offering, RRT spent many hours evaluating the submitted applications, and attending site visits and technical review meetings. OWEB staff considered RRT recommendations and funding availability and developed the following recommendations for the Board to fund:

·   35 restoration applications for almost $9 million,

·   15 technical assistance applications for $929,070,

·   5 stakeholder engagement applications for $298,552,

·   14 monitoring applications for $2.24 million.


Below are instructions for accessing electronic copies of application evaluations.

Public Comment

The public is welcome to provide written or verbal comments to OWEB in response to the funding recommendations. All written comments and requests to make verbal comments to the Board can be submitted on our website at Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board : Public Comment or can be emailed to Nicole Bettinardi at [email protected]. When providing public comment, please include the assigned number of the application being referenced. The deadline for submitting written comments and requests to make verbal comments is 4:00 p.m. ThursdayOctober 19, 2023.   


The Board will consider public comments and make award decisions at its October 23-25 meeting.


Contact Regarding Review and Recommendations

For questions about accessing evaluations or the RRT review of your application, contact your Regional Program Representative.

Please email questions about staff funding recommendations to Eric Williams, Grant Program Manager, or phone him at 971-345-7014.

To Access Application Evaluations:

1. Go to OGMS. Use your OGMS login if you have one or use Log-In ID: grantee and Password: oweb.

2. Under ‘OGMS Menu’ choose “Current Application Evaluations and Recommendations.”

3. Click to select Region.

4. Click the ‘Evaluation’ link to the right of the project name to view the evaluation.

Funding Recommendations for OWEB Spring 2023 Open Solicitation Grant Offering (govdelivery.com)




October 6, 2023

FY 2023 WaterSMART Grants: Title XVI Congressionally Authorized Water Reclamation and Reuse Projects  

WHAT DOES IT FUND? This program provides financial and technical assistance to local water agencies for the planning, design, and construction of water reclamation and reuse projects. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? State, regional, or local authorities, Indian tribes or tribal organizations, and other entities such as water conservation or conservancy districts, wastewater districts, or rural water districts who are authorized sponsors of one of the 53 Title XVI Projects authorized by the Title XVI Act


WHEN'S IT DUE? December 7, 2023




October 6, 2023

FY 2023/2024 WaterSMART Grants: Title XVI WIIN Act Water Reclamation and Reuse Projects  

WHAT DOES IT FUND? This program aims to stretch limited water supplies in the western United States and avoid conflicts over water by providing financial and technical assistance for the planning, design, and construction of water reclamation and reuse projects. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? State, regional, or local authorities, including states; Indian tribes; municipalities; irrigation districts; water districts; wastewater districts; and other organizations with water or power delivery authorities


WHEN'S IT DUE? December 7, 2023




October 6, 2023

FY 2023 Wetland Program Development Grants (WPDG) Region 3   

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to increase the quantity of wetlands in the United States by conserving and restoring wetland acreage and improving wetland conditions. Eligible applicants include states, territories, federally recognized tribes, non-WPP, local governments, interstate agencies, intertribal consortia, colleges and universities that are agencies of the state. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Limited to projects that will be performed within the funding agency's Region 3, which consists of Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia


WHEN'S IT DUE? November 13, 2023




October 6, 2023

FY 2024 Partners for Fish and Wildlife   

WHAT DOES IT FUND? This program supports the restoration and conservation of fish and wildlife habitats for the benefit of federal trust resources by providing direct technical and financial assistance to private landowners. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Local governments, state governments, special district governments, small businesses, institutions of higher education, non-profit organizations, for-profit organizations, public housing authorities, Indian housing authorities, Native American tribal governments and organizations, individuals, independent school districts, and other entities


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling through September 30, 2024




September 29, 2023

FY 2023 Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) Program   

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to accelerate investment in the nation's water, wastewater, and stormwater infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost, supplemental credit assistance under customized terms to creditworthy water infrastructure projects of national and regional significance. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Local, state, tribal, and federal government entities, partnerships and joint ventures, corporations and trusts, and clean water and drinking water state revolving fund (SRF) programs. 


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling




September 29, 2023

FY 2023-2024 Wetland Program Development Grants (WPDGs) Region 10   

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to increase the quantity and quality of wetlands in the U.S. by conserving and restoring wetland acreage and improving wetland condition. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? States, territories, tribes, local government agencies, colleges and universities that are agencies of a state, interstate agencies, and intertribal consortia.


WHEN'S IT DUE? November 15, 2023 




September 28, 2023

FY 2024 Small Surface Water and Groundwater Storage Projects 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? This program provides Federal assistance to enhance water storage opportunities for future generations in support of the Department of Interior’s priorities. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? States and local governments, independent school districts, institutions of higher education, Native American Tribal governments (Federally recognized) and organizations, public housing authorities/Indian housing authorities, nonprofits, Individuals, for-profit organizations and small businesses


WHEN'S IT DUE? November 30, 2023




September 28, 2023

FY 2024 Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant Program 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? This program supports projects that promote rural economic development and job creation. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Applicants identified under the Rural Electrification Act of 1936 are corporations, states, territories, subdivisions and agencies of states and territories, municipalities, people's utility districts, and cooperative, nonprofit, or limited-dividend associations


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling




September 28, 2023

FY 2023 Wetland Program Development Grants (WPDGs) Region 6 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? This program provides an opportunity to conduct projects that promote the coordination and acceleration of research, investigations, experiments, training, demonstrations, surveys, and studies relating to the causes, effects, extent, prevention, reduction, and elimination of water pollution. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? State, tribal, territory (Insular Areas), local government agencies, and interstate or intertribal entities within EPA’s Region 6


WHEN'S IT DUE? November 3, 2023 




September 20, 2023

FY 2023/24 WaterSMART Grants: Large-Scale Water Recycling Projects 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? This program provides funding to water recycling projects that have a total project cost greater than or equal to $500 million. Large-scale water recycling projects will play an important role in helping communities develop local, drought resistant sources of water supply by turning currently unusable water sources into a new source of water supply that is less vulnerable to drought and climate change. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? States, Indian Tribes, municipalities, irrigation districts, water districts, wastewater districts, and any state, regional, or local authority with water or power delivery authority. All applicants must be located in the Western United States.


WHEN'S IT DUE? November 21, 2023; March 29, 2024; September 20, 2024




September 8, 2023

FY 2023 Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG): On-Farm Conservation Innovation Trials

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of On-Farm Trials is to stimulate the evaluation and adoption of innovative conservation approaches in partnership with agricultural producers. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Local, state, and tribal governments, for profit organizations other than small businesses, nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS (other than institutions of higher education), private institutions of higher education, public and state-controlled institutions of higher education, and small businesses


WHEN'S IT DUE? October 30, 2024




September 8, 2023

FY 2024 Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act (NMBCA) Grant Programs 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to support projects that promote the conservation of neotropical migratory birds and their habitats in the United States, Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? States, municipalities, or political subdivisions of a state, or of any foreign governments, international organizations, private entities, officers, employees, agents, departments, and instrumentalities of the federal government, and other entities subject to the jurisdiction of the United States or of any foreign country


WHEN'S IT DUE? November 2, 2023




September 6, 2023

FY 2024 Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program (CFP)

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to establish community forests by protecting forest land from conversion to non-forest uses. Supported projects should provide community benefits, including public recreation, environmental and economic benefits, and forest-based educational programs. Public access is required for all projects. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Local governments, Indian Tribes and Alaska Native Corporations, and non-profit organizations


WHEN'S IT DUE? January 1, 2024




September 6, 2023

FY 2024 Weather Program Office Research Programs 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of these programs is to support new weather, water, and earth system observing and forecasting applications, including improved analysis techniques, better statistical or dynamic forecast models and techniques, and communication of that information to better inform the public. Two grant competitions are being funded via this solicitation: 1. Climate Testbed (CTB) and 2. Fire Weather. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Local, state, and tribal governments, US-based institutions of higher education, cooperative institutes, commercial organizations, and non-profit organizations.


WHEN'S IT DUE? November 11, 2023




August 29, 2023

Special Districts Association of Oregon - Safety & Security Grant Program

Applications are now being accepted for the 2023-2024 SDIS Safety & Security Grant Program! SDIS members are eligible to apply for a matching grant to help fund expenses related to projects that mitigate exposures to cybersecurity threats or a new safety and security-related project. The SDIS Safety & Security Grant Program assists members with funding of safety and security projects that lead to reduced exposure in high-level claims categories. It is our goal to eliminate or lower risk to the SDIS insurance program by supporting members’ proactive approaches to preventing loss.



FIRST PRIORITY: Due to increasing claims related to cybersecurity, our first priority for grant funding will be cybersecurity-related projects. Members can receive up to a maximum of $5,000 matching grant. Examples of eligible projects include, but are not limited to:

·   Network and application security

·   Database and infrastructure security

·   Cloud and mobile device security

·   Database and critical infrastructure security


SECOND PRIORITY: Non-cybersecurity-related safety and security projects will qualify for second priority. Members applying under our second priority are eligible for a matching grant up to a maximum of $2,500. Your district may apply for any new safety or security project you choose. Examples include, but are not limited to, video surveillance equipment, security systems, enhanced parking lot lighting, and safe shop equipment. Routine maintenance to existing facilities and normal business expenses will not be considered. Examples of eligible projects include, but are not limited to:

·   Fencing

·   Lighting

·   Cameras

·   Alarms

·   Window Film

·   Securing Valuables



This is a 50/50 matching grant program, which means the cost of the project will be split equally between your district and SDIS, up to a maximum of $5,000 for first priority projects and $2,500 for second priority projects.



If your district is planning a $10,000 cybersecurity project, you can apply to receive a maximum of $5,000. If the project is $15,000, the maximum is still $5,000. If you are applying for a general safety and security grant, you are eligible for up to a maximum of $2,500. If your project is $4,000 you can apply for a grant up to $2,000. Anything $5,000 or over would be the maximum of $2,500. 



The SDIS Safety Grant Committee will review each application to determine which are eligible to receive funding. Matching grants will be awarded to applicants that meet the eligibility requirements by order of priority and on a first come, first served basis. After the first priority level has been funded, grants will be awarded to applicants in the second priority level. 



Fill out and return the application for your district by mail to SDAO, PO Box 12613, Salem, Oregon 97309 or email to [email protected].


Application Deadline: 12pm on Wednesday, November 15, 2023.

Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.


Download the Safety and Security Grant Program Flyer




August 11, 2023

FY 2023-2024 WaterSMART Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration Projects  

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to provide funding for the restoration and protection of aquatic ecosystems. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? States, tribes, irrigation districts, water districts, and other organizations with water or power delivery authority located in Reclamation States, including entities and organizations that own a dam that is eligible for upgrade, modification, or removal. Nonprofit conservation organizations working in partnership with the entities listed above or that notify entities listed above


WHEN'S IT DUE? January 24, 2024 




August 11, 2023

FY 2023 WaterSMART Grants Cooperative Watershed Management Program - Phase I 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to provide provides funding to implement Phase I activities to develop a watershed group, complete watershed restoration planning activities, and design watershed management projects. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? New or existing watershed groups located in the Western United States including states, Indian Tribes, local and special districts (e.g., irrigation, water districts, water conservation districts), local governmental entities, interstate organizations, and non-profit organizations


WHEN'S IT DUE? December 5, 2023 

2023 Updates\WaterSMART_FY23_CWMP_Phase I_NOFO_508.pdf




August 11, 2023

FY 2024 WaterSMART Grants: Drought Response Program Drought Resiliency Project Grants

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to support a proactive approach to drought by providing assistance to water managers to develop and update comprehensive drought plans and implement projects that will build long-term resiliency to drought. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? States, tribes, irrigation districts, water districts, and other state, regional, or local authorities with water or power delivery authority located in the Western United States, as well as nonprofit conservation organizations working in partnership with the entities listed above


WHEN'S IT DUE? October 31, 2023

2023 Updates\WaterSMART_FY24 DRP NOFO_508_8-7-2023.pdf




August 11, 2023

FY 2023-2024 WaterSMART Planning and Project Design Grants

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to provide funding for collaborative planning and design projects to support water management improvements. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Water Strategy Grants and Project Design Grants eligible applicants are divided into two categories. Category A applicants are states, Tribes, irrigation districts, and water districts; State, regional, or local authorities, the members of which include one or more organizations with water or power delivery authority; and other organizations with water or power delivery authority. Category B applicants are nonprofit conservation organizations that are acting in partnership with, and with the agreement of, an entity described in Category A. Drought Contingency Planning eligible applicants are a state, Tribe, irrigation district, water district, or other organization with water or power delivery.


WHEN'S IT DUE? Proposals received before October 17, 2023 will be considered for FY 2023 funding. Proposals received after October 17, 2023 and before April 2, 2024 will be considered for FY 2024 funding.

2023 Updates\WaterSMART_Planning_Project Design_NOFO_508.pdf




August 4, 2023

FY 2023 Community Wildfire Defense Grant Program

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to assist at-risk local communities and Indian Tribes with planning and mitigating against the risk created by wildfire. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Units of local governments representing communities located in an area with a risk of wildfires, Indian Tribes, non-profit organizations including homeowner associations that assist such communities, state forestry agencies (including U.S. territories and interests), and Alaska Native Corporations

TOTAL FUNDING AMOUNT? Up to $250,000,000

WHEN'S IT DUE? October 31, 2023  




August 3, 2023

OWEB is now accepting online applications for the Fall 2023 Open Solicitation Grant Offering for the following grant types:

·   Restoration (25% match is required)

·   Technical Assistance (NEW: $1 match is required; no cap on requests)

·   Stakeholder Engagement (NEW: $1 match is required)


OWEB has made two key changes to the technical assistance and stakeholder engagement programs to address barriers to participation.

·   Recognizing that matching funds are more difficult to obtain for Technical Assistance and Stakeholder Engagement projects, and that match is sometimes a barrier to participation in OWEB grants, the match requirement for these grant types has been reduced to $1. The 25% match requirement for restoration remains in place.

·   In response to rising costs, increasing project complexity, and more comprehensive permitting requirements, the $75,000 cap on technical assistance application requests has been removed. Please click on the grant type of interest for application requirements and login information. If you already have an Online Application login, you may access the application directly.


Grant applications are due October 30, 2023, by 5:00 pm and must be submitted via OWEB's online grant application. The OWEB Board plans to make grant awards at the April 2024 meeting.


If you have questions about applying for an OWEB grant, please contact the Regional Program Representative for your region. If you are new to OWEB and our grant program, please visit OWEB’s website.


These grants support voluntary efforts by Oregonians to protect and restore healthy watersheds. This includes actions supporting the Oregon Plan for Salmon and Watersheds and the Oregon Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy.

OWEB anticipates making available a combined total of over $10 million for Restoration, Technical Assistance, and Stakeholder Engagement through this solicitation.

Funding is from Oregon Lottery revenue, federal Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Funds through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and revenue from the sale of Salmon License Plates.


Thank you for your interest in watershed restoration and protection!

Eric Williams Grant Program Manager




FY 2023 Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) Program

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to provide financial and technical assistance to help local communities relieve imminent threats to life and property caused by floods, fires, windstorms, and other natural occurrences that impair a watershed. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Sponsors are entities with a legal interest in, or responsibility for, the areas threatened by the watershed emergency, including states, state agencies, and legal subdivisions of a state government, local units of government, including cities, counties, towns, flood and water control districts, soil and water conservation districts, Native American tribes, and Tribal organizations 


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling 




FY 2023 Water and Waste Disposal Predevelopment Planning Grants

WHAT DOES IT FUND? This program supports the provision of clean and reliable drinking water systems, sanitary sewage disposal, sanitary solid waste disposal, and stormwater drainage for households and businesses in eligible rural areas. Funding will help eligible low-income communities plan and develop applications for the funding agency's Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant Program. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? State and local government entities, nonprofit organizations, and federally recognized tribes


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling 




FY 2023 Special Evaluation Assistance for Rural Communities and Households (SEARCH) Grant

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to help small, financially distressed rural communities pay for predevelopment feasibility studies, design, and technical assistance for proposed water and waste disposal projects. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? State and local governments, non-profit organizations, and federally recognized


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling




FY 2023 Community Facilities Program Disaster Repair Grants

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to repair essential community facilities damaged by presidentially declared disasters in calendar year 2022. Projects must be located in rural areas, except for utility-type services such as telecommunications or hydroelectric that serve both rural and non-rural areas; financially feasible; for public use; necessary for orderly community development; and consistent with the state strategic plan. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? State and local governments, nonprofit corporations or associations that have significant ties with the local rural community, unless they are nonprofit utilities, and federally recognized Indian tribes


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling 




FY 2023 Telecommunications Infrastructure Loans and Loan Guarantees Program

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to support the construction, maintenance, improvement, and expansion of telephone service and broadband in rural areas. Projects are intended to help maintain a seamless nationwide telecommunications network that also provides access to broadband for education, health care, public safety, and jobs for all Americans regardless of where they live. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? State and local governments, federally recognized tribes, nonprofit organizations, including cooperatives and limited dividend or mutual associations, and for-profit businesses that function as a corporation or limited liability company (LLC) 


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling 



Applied Science Grants

Through WaterSMART, Reclamation provides financial assistance on a competitive basis for Applied Science Grants. Through these grants, Reclamation provides funding to non-Federal entities for the development of tools and information to support water management for multiple uses. Eligible projects include the development of modeling and forecasting tools, hydrologic data platforms, and new data sets. See a full description of eligible project types.


Eligible applicants include States, tribes, irrigation and water districts, and other organizations with water or power delivery authority located in the Western United States and territories. Universities, nonprofit research organizations and nonprofit organizations located in the United States are also eligible if they partner with an entity with water delivery authority. See a full description of applicant eligibility.



Applied Science Grants Fact Sheet



For additional information on WaterSMART Applied Science Grants, please contact Ms. Avra Morgan at 303-445-2906 or send an email to [email protected].

You may complete this form to receive WaterSMART program notification from the Bureau of Reclamation.



FY23 Applied Science Grants Webinar

The Bureau of Reclamation hosted an informational webinar Wednesday, July, 26th to discuss eligible applicants and project types, program requirements, and the evaluation criteria for the Applied Science Grants funding opportunity. Click here to view a recording of the live event.

Download slideshow


Reclamation’s WaterSMART Applied Science Grants are providing up to $5 million, with funding for each project limited to no more than $400,000. The funding opportunity is available at www.grants.gov by searching for funding opportunity number R23AS00446. Applications are due by 5 p.m. MDT, Oct. 17, 2023. 




2023 Feasibility Study Grant Application Deadline – October 18, 2023 at 5 p.m.

The Oregon Water Resources Department (OWRD) invites applications for studies to evaluate the feasibility of developing water conservation, reuse, and storage projects through the Feasibility Study Grant funding opportunity. Grants require a 50% cost-share match, which may include in-kind contributions.


What is a Feasibility Study? A feasibility study is an assessment of the practicality of a proposed project and can be used to determine if and how a conservation, reuse, or storage project should proceed to implementation. The feasibility study focuses on helping to answer the essential question of, “should we proceed with the proposed project idea?” All activities of the study are directed toward helping answer this question. See this handout for more information on Feasibility Study Grants.


Eligible studies: Studies may include analysis or evaluation of hydrological refill capacity, water needs, geology, or hydrology, engineering and water exchange, financial feasibility, fiscal analysis, instream ecological flows, alternative means of supplying water, including costs and benefits, environmental impacts or public benefits, hydrological analyses, or water quality impacts. Please note that all funded studies must be completed by June 30, 2025. 


Anticipated grant funding available: $750,000

How to apply: Application materials are available online.

Application deadline: October 18, 2023 at 5 p.m.

Pre-Application Conference: OWRD encourages all applicants to request a Pre-Application Conference before applying. Staff will review your draft application and provide feedback. You must submit your draft application two weeks before the pre-application conference. To learn more, see the pre-application conference form.




FY 2023 Corps Water Infrastructure Financing Program 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to enable local investment in infrastructure projects that enhance community resilience to flooding, promote economic prosperity, and improve environmental quality. Through the CWIFP, USACE will accelerate non-federal investments in water resources infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost loans to creditworthy borrowers. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Corporations, partnerships, joint ventures, trusts, state or local governments, tribal governments, and state infrastructure financing authorities

TOTAL FUNDING AMOUNT? $7.5 billion available for loans





FY 2023 Credit Assistance Under the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) Program 

WHAT DOES IT FUND? The purpose of this program is to accelerate investment in the nation's water, wastewater, and stormwater infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost, supplemental credit assistance under customized terms to creditworthy water infrastructure projects of national and regional significance. Click here for more information.

WHO'S ELIGIBLE? Local, state, tribal, and federal government entities, partnerships and joint ventures, corporations and trusts, and clean water and drinking water state revolving fund (SRF) programs. 


WHEN'S IT DUE? Rolling




Rural Energy Savings Program 

USDA Rural Development provides loans to entities that agree to make affordable loans to help consumers implement cost-effective, energy efficiency measures to lower energy bills for rural families and businesses and reduce barriers to investment in energy efficiency projects or activities. Application Deadline: Open




Single Family Housing Rural Disaster Home Repair Grants 

USDA Rural Development grants to very-low and low-income homeowners to repair homes damaged in a Calendar Year 2022 Presidentially Declared Disaster Area. To determine your eligibility, review the list of Presidentially Declared Disasters by State and County. How do I get started? Contact a USDA home loan specialist in your areaApplication Deadline: Open




Water & Waste Disposal Loan & Grant Program

USDA Rural Development offers funding for clean and reliable drinking water systems, sanitary sewage disposal, sanitary solid waste disposal and storm water drainage to households and businesses in eligible rural areas. Application Deadline: Ongoing




Emergency Community Water Assistance Grants

USDA Rural Development grants for eligible communities to prepare for or recover from an emergency that threatens the availability of safe, reliable drinking water. Application Deadline: Ongoing

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Ridgeview Irrigation District/South Board of Control – Manager

The Manager of South Board of Control administers and implements the policies, programs and rules adopted by the SBOC Board of Directors. The Manager is responsible for the day-to-day management of operations and successful leadership of the South Board of Control.


Position Qualifications:

·   5 Years of experience in the operations and maintenance of canal systems

·   Ability to read, understand and follow the Oregon and Idaho code, Title 42-43 for Irrigation Districts

·   Desirable for individual to relocate to within 30 minutes of the district boundaries


Desired Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

·   Knowledge of operations, service and activities of the comprehensive water distribution system

·   Ability to plan, organizes, direct, and coordinate the work of lower-level employees

·   Knowledge of pertinent federal, state and local laws, codes and regulations

·   Ability to communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing

·   Knowledge of applying for grants

·   Attend and participate in professional group meetings

·   Knowledge and ability to manage Aquatic chemical and spray regulations

·   Knowledge of budget and accounting practices


Supervisory Responsibilities:

·   Directly responsible for the supervision of the Water Master, O&M Crew, and Ditch Riders.


A full job description can be found at http://www.southboardofcontrol.com


If you have any question please contact Steve Clapier, Chairman, South Board of Control (208) 249-4372


Applications can be picked up at the SBOC office 118 S 1st ST W. Homedale, or requested by email.


Please send applications, cover letter and resume to [email protected]

Or by mail:                            

South Board of Control

P.O. Box 67

Homedale, ID. 83628


This is a full time, full benefit position. Salary will be determined based on experience. All applications need to be in by November 30th. The person selected should anticipate beginning employment January 1st, 2024




Three Sisters Irrigation District – Financial Administrative Manager

Three Sisters Irrigation District (TSID or District) is actively recruiting for the position of Financial Administrative Manager. Under management direction, the Financial aspect will oversee the District’s financial data and compliance by maintaining accurate books on accounts payable and receivable, collections and liens, payroll and taxes, daily financial entries, and account reconciliations. Perform accounting tasks such as monthly financial reporting, general ledger entries and adjustments, grant assistance and reporting, and general accounting duties. Also includes scheduling power on a daily basis for the three Hydroelectric plants. The administrative aspect will oversee office operations including answering phones, direct messages as appropriate, greet/assist office visitors, follow up on correspondence and assist with other duties as required and directed by the Board of Directors.


Qualifications must include:

·   QuickBooks desktop and online 4-5 years

·   Knowledge of PC Windows OS

·   Proficiency in Microsoft Office

·   Excellent organization skills

·   Able to work independently and as a team


The District offers a benefits package that includes:

·   Salary starting at $58,240 – $66,560 DOE

·   Paid vacation after one year

·   Sick leave & 10 holidays

·   Medical and Vision Benefits after 90 days


Work Schedule:

Monday – Friday 8 am – 5 pm, full-time. Position is open until filled.


Send cover letter and resume describing experience to:


PO Box 2230

Sisters, OR 97759


or by email to [email protected]

Full job description


Oregon State Conservationist Hiring Update

Press Release - October 11, 2023

NRCS Chief Terry Cosby recently announced State Conservationist selections for four of the five vacant states. Selections have been made in Kansas, Kentucky, Indiana and Nevada. No selection was made for Oregon. The position will be re-advertised soon. 


Oregon is a very diverse state with a long history of being a top performer and as such, the Chief is committed to recruiting the right State Conservationist to continue Oregon’s legacy.


If you have any questions, contact Astor Boozer, Western Regional Conservationist: [email protected]

101 NW 32nd Street | (123) 456-7890


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