Gone Fishin’; Time for public to get involved with Truckee River Operating Agreement | SierraSun.com
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Gone Fishin’; Time for public to get involved with Truckee River Operating Agreement

Bruce Ajari

Lake Tahoe, the Truckee River, and our surrounding waters are all extremely important to those of us who live or vacation here. These are natural resources that we all presume will be here for our children in the future.

While they may be here in the future, preserving them in their present state or even enhancing them should be our goal. Man has done many things to change the face of this land.

The management of the Truckee River lakes and reservoirs has been a highly controversial issue with the releases of water during drought years for the endangered Chu-ui and the high releases during the flood of 1997. Finding a plan that will accommodate the needs of all parties involved seems to be an unrealistic goal. Nobody will get all that they want.

Because these lakes and reservoirs and the Truckee River are in our backyards, it is important for us to have a voice in how this precious water will be managed.

We have a tremendous amount at stake considering much of our local economy depends on these waters as recreational sites.

The following press release was sent to me by Kathleen Eagan, former Truckee mayor/councilwoman and active member of the locally based Truckee River Basin Water Group.

The proposed plan for future operations and the accompanying draft environmental impact statement/environmental impact report (EIS/EIR) will be released for public review in early March. The U.S. Department of the Interior will hold a workshop in Truckee on Tuesday, March 24, from 7 to 9 p.m., at the Town Hall/PUD Board Room. Those members of the public interested in reviewing and commenting on the EIS/EIR and draft Truckee River Operating Agreement (TROA) are strongly urged to attend.

The workshops will provide an overview of the TROA and the environmental document as well as the process for the formal public comment on the EIS/EIR. These presentations will be followed by discussion of local issues and a question and answer period. A formal public hearing on the draft TROA and EIS/EIR is scheduled for May 11, in Truckee. The hearing will be from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Town Hall/PUD Board Room.

The primary participants in negotiations leading to the proposed TROA include the United States, the states of California and Nevada, the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe and Sierra Pacific Power Company. The locally-based Truckee River Basin Water Group, comprised of representatives from Sierra, Nevada and Placer counties, the Town of Truckee, water purveyors, and interested public, has been advising the California negotiators on issues relating to our region. The Truckee River Basin Water Group has agreed to help publicize and coordinate the workshop.

Workshops are being held in Truckee and Lake Tahoe as well as various Nevada locations such as Reno, Carson City, Fernley, Nixon and Fallon.

According to Eagan, copies of the draft EIS/EIR will be available locally at the library for public review prior to the workshop. I would encourage each of you to review a copy of this document and attend.

We are all abundantly aware of some of the current operating agreement limitations and problems. The current agreement was established with minimal California input. This is an opportunity to help forge a better agreement for our region.

Calender March/April

— Truckee River Operating Agreement EIS/EIR Workshop – March 24, 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Truckee Town Hall/PUD Board Room.

— Tahoe Truckee Flyfishers Regular Meeting – March 26, 6:45 p.m. at the Crystal Bay Club. Speaker is Guide Randy Johnson. The public is welcome.

— High Sierra Fly Casters – Fly Fishing Festival, April 19 at the Carson Valley Inn and Casino in Minden, NV. There is a fee for admission. The event runs from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

— Tahoe Truckee Flyfishers Regular Meeting – April 23, 6:45 p.m. at the Crystal Bay Club. A technical night on equipment. The public is welcome.

— Opening Day for the California General Trout Season – Saturday, April 25.

See fishing report on page 3C.

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