Lower Platte North NRD
September 28, 2016 5:00 PM
Water Committee Meeting
1. POSTPONED MOTIONS
Rationale

None

 

2. REGULATORY
2.A. POLICY ON IRRIGATED ACRES AND SOIL CLASSIFICATION
Rationale

The proposed policy on the number of irrigated acres to award due to soils classification is attached.

After much discussion it was decided to leave the current policy of the number of irrigation acres for class 6,7, and 8 soils due to slope to stay the same.

Attachments
Recommended Motion

To approve and follow the current LPNNRD policy that the number of new irrigated acres under an irrigation system is not to exceed the number of acres of Land Classes I, II, III, IV and V plus 20% of class VI,VII, and VIII soils due to slope as categorized by the Natural Resources Conservation Service

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  To approve current LPNNRD policy that the number of new irrigated acres under an irrigation system is not to exceed 20% of class 6,7, or 8 soils due to slope as categorized by the Natural Resources Conservation Service passed with a motion by Mr. Robert Meduna and a second by Robert Hilger.

2.b. GROUND WATER MANAGEMENT AREA
2.b.1. Variance Request in the Hydrologically Connected Area (Limited Development Area)
Rationale

Attached is the final ranking for all applications in the Hydrologically Connected Area. Section M Rule 1 of the LPNNRD Groundwater Management Area Rules and Regulations states "...The District (LPNNRD) shall limit development of new irrigated acres with a goal of no more than 2,500 acres per year in the hydrologically connected area."

The line is set as close to the threshold without exceeding the 2500 acre limit.

The variance request LPN-V-015-0427 for Martin Erickson is in the Restricted Development Area but within one mile of the border with the Hydrologically Connected area.  Therefore following LPNNRD policy, letters will be sent to adjacent landowners giving them notice that they can testify in favor or opposition to this request and in addition 3 test holes are required.

 

Attachments
Recommended Motion

To approve the following variance requests in the Hydrologically Connected Area:
LPN-V-016-0445
LPN-V-013-0343
LPN-V-016-0438
LPN-V-013-0297
LPN-V-013-0244
LPN-V-016-0439
LPN-V-013-0290
LPN-V-016-0449
LPN-V-013-0345
LPN-V-013-0289
LPN-V-016-0442
LPN-V-016-0451
LPN-V-013-0269
LPN-V-016-0448
LPN-V-015-0428
LPN-V-016-0452
LPN-V-016-0437
LPN-V-016-0447
LPN-V-013-0273
LPN-V-013-0346
LPN-V-013-0255
LPN-V-013-0312
LPN-V-014-0383
LPN-V-013-0293
LPN-V-013-0262
LPN-V-016-0444
LPN-V-015-0431
LPN-V-013-0243
LPN-V-015-0435
LPN-V-013-0253
LPN-V-016-0450
LPN-V-013-0280
LPN-V-015-0433
LPN-V-013-0282
and pending approval for LPN-V-015-0427 following submittal and review of 3 three test holes and pending comments from adjacent landowners as outlined on LPNNRD policy of new irrigation in the Restricted Development Area as attached to the Water Committee Minutes

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  To approve the following variance requests in the Hydrologically Connected Area: LPN-V-016-0445 LPN-V-013-0343 LPN-V-016-0438 LPN-V-013-0297 LPN-V-013-0244 LPN-V-016-0439 LPN-V-013-0290 LPN-V-016-0449 LPN-V-013-0345 LPN-V-013-0289 LPN-V-016-0442 LPN-V-016-0451 LPN-V-013-0269 LPN-V-016-0448 LPN-V-015-0428 LPN-V-016-0452 LPN-V-016-0437 LPN-V-016-0447 LPN-V-013-0273 LPN-V-013-0346 LPN-V-013-0255 LPN-V-013-0312 LPN-V-014-0383 LPN-V-013-0293 LPN-V-013-0262 LPN-V-016-0444 LPN-V-015-0431 LPN-V-013-0243 LPN-V-015-0435 LPN-V-013-0253 LPN-V-016-0450 LPN-V-013-0280 LPN-V-015-0433 LPN-V-013-0282 and pending approval for LPN-V-015-0427 following submittal and review of 3 three test holes and pending comments from adjacent landowners as outlined on LPNNRD policy of new irrigation in the Restricted Development Area. passed with a motion by Robert Hilger and a second by Dave Saalfeld.

2.b.2. Variance Requests in the Non-Hydrologically Connected Area (Normal Development Area)
Rationale

Approval letters have been sent to landowners.

2.b.3. Variance Requests in the Restricted Development Areas
Rationale

No new updates.

2.b.4. Well Permit Program
2.b.4.A. Well Permits Approved
Rationale

3 new permits were approved since the last Committee meeting.

Landowner Number Of Wells Number Of New Irrigated Acres Type Of Well County Subarea
Loran Houska 1 0 Irrigation

Saunders

Todd Valley
Mead Cattle Company 1 0 Livestock Saunders Todd Valley
 Douglas Ritthaler 1 0 Irrigation  Saunders  Leshara Uplands

 

 

 

 

 

 

The total number of approved permits for 2016 is 15.

Location of Approved Well Permits for 2016:  Correct as of 9/27/2016

County

Irrigation -New

Irrigation -Replacement

Stock

Commercial

Municipal

Other

Total

Butler 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Colfax 0 1 0 0 0 0 1
Dodge 0 3 0 0 0 4 7
Boone 1 1 0 0 0 0 2
Madison 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Platte 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Saunders 1 2 1 0 0 1 5
Total 2 7 1 0 0 5

15

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.b.4.b. Tim Bartek Well Permit Application
Rationale

Tim Bartek would like to know the Water Committee's feelings on a new well to irrigate no new acres in S16-T13N-R8E Saunders County, Swedeburg Subarea. He is currently irrigating ~260 acres off of one well but due to a change in the operation he is requesting a well of his own for the north 133 acres. Mr. Bartek does not want to invest any money if there isn't a chance for approval. Attached is the policy for Irrigation Development in the Restricted Development Area as well as a section map.

Since no new acres are involved and the new well (or supplemental well in this case) would be due to a change in ownership it is felt that Water Committee may look favorable at this situation.  LPNNRD policy on development of irrigation within the Restricted Development Area would also have to be followed.

Attachments
2.b.5. Potential Violation of Expanded Irrigation
Rationale

Inspections in mid August 2016 indicated that land in the SE1/4, Section 25, T18N, R4E, Colfax County had been irrigated in violation of LPNNRD GWMA Rules and Regulations since this land was not certified by the District for irrigation nor was an approved variance issued for this property.  

Certified letters with notice to issue Cease and Desist Order were sent to M-G Agri Properties and John Snover on September 20, 2016.  According to Nebraska State Statue they have three days to request a hearing.  No request was made.  The Water committee also requested their attendance at the September 28, 2016 committee meeting, but no one showed up.

Certified letters issuing the Cease and Desist Order were sent September 28, 2016 to the landowner M-G Agri Properties and the tenant John Snover.

 

Attachments
2.b.6. Special Quantity Subareas
Rationale

Platte - Colfax SQS (SQS #2)

Staff has continued checking flow meters and measuring ground water levels.  Flow meter cost-share applications are being received in the mail each day and will be discussed under the Cost Share Programs.

 

2.b.6.a. Flow Meter Maintenance Program
Rationale

The LPNNRD is ready to request proposals for our Flow Meter Maintenance Program (see attached).

This will be sent to area meter companies, irrigation equipment dealers, well drillers, and pump installers.

Attachments
Recommended Motion

*To approve taking and advertising for "Requests for Proposals of a Flow Meter Maintenance Program for the LPNNRD" as outlined in the attached document with Proposals to be returned to the LPNNRD by October 25, 2016

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  To approve the "Requests for Proposals of a Flow Meter Maintenance Program for the LPNNRD" as outlined in the attached document with Proposals to be returned to the LPNNRD by October 25, 2016 passed with a motion by Mr. Robert Meduna and a second by Robert Hilger.

2.b.7. Lower Platte River Basin Water Management Plan Coalition (LPRBC)
Rationale

The next Board of Directors meeting for the LPRBC is scheduled for October 17, 2016 in Ord at LLNRD.  Bob Hilger (Chairperson) and Jim McDermott should attend.  John Miyoshi and Larry Angle also plan to attend.

Hilger said he won't be able to attend so Frank Pollard has volunteered to temporarily fill that vacancy. 

 

2.b.8. Voluntary Integrated Water Management Plan - LENRD and LPNNRD
Rationale

The next Stakeholders meeting for the LPNNRD voluntary Integrated Water Management Plan is scheduled for October 5, 2016 at the LPN office at 10:00 am.  DNR has made comments to the most recent goals and objectives, which will be discussed at the meeting.  DNR is still reviewing the District's Plan, which includes the goals and objectives, but also outlines the more detailed roles of the LPNNRD and DNR.

 

2.b.9. Cost Share Programs
2.b.9.A. Irrigation Well Sample Kits
Rationale

Requests for 343 irrigation kits have been received for the year.  A total of 328 water samples have been returned from producers (ten samples received last week) and sent to the HHS lab.  Sample results from the lab have been forwarded to 297 producers and this includes 20 water sample results that were mailed the day of the Water Committee meeting.

2.b.9.b. Flow Meter Cost Share in SQS #2
Rationale

So far we have received approximately 70 cost share applications for flow meters in the Platte - Colfax SQS (SQS #2).

These need to be inspected to make sure these are LPNNRD approved meters, installed properly, and matches the additional information provided on the application.  Some of these should be ready for cost share at the next Committee meeting.

 

2.b.10. Bellwood Phase 2 Area
Rationale

 

2016 is the fourteenth year for this Phase 2 Area.  Phase 2 information packets with order were mailed to producers in June, before the start of irrigation.

This area was reduced from 32 sections to 21 sections in 2015.

Year

Nitrate-Nitrogen Range

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

0 To 8.0 Ppm

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

8.01 To 10.00 Ppm

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

Greater Than 10 Ppm

2015

0 to 32.3 ppm

43% (31 of 72)

8% (6 of 72)

49% (35 of 72)

2016

0 to 35.1 ppm

37% (25 of 68)

12% (8 of 68)

51% (35 of 68)

 

Hough Farms water sample of G-065461 collected in August had a 93.6 ppm result for G-065461. After talking with Tommy Hough it was determined that this sample was collected while they were chemigating at this well.  Oaklund arranged with Tommy Hough to re-sample this well.  The result of the second sample was 13.6 ppm, which is within the range of previous sample results (3.70 to 18.5 ppm).  [Note:  The 93.6 result was removed from the above table.]

 

2.b.11. Richland - Schuyler Phase 2 Area
Rationale

2016 is the first year of this Phase 2 Area.  There are 45 registered active irrigation wells in the ten sections of this new area.

Year

Nitrate-Nitrogen Range

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

0 To 8.0 Ppm

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

8.01 To 10.00 Ppm

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

Greater Than 10 Ppm

2016

1.47 to 24.8 ppm

33% (8 of 18)

6% (1 of 18)

61% (11 of 18)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.b.12. Richland - Schuyler Phase 3 Area
Rationale

2016 is the first year of this Phase 3 Area.  This Phase 3 area went into effect September 1, 2015.  The 55 sections of this area first went into a Phase 2 Area in 2004.  

Year

Nitrate-Nitrogen Range

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

0 To 8.0 Ppm

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

8.01 To 10.00 Ppm

Percent

Nitrate-Nitrogen

Greater Than 10 Ppm

2015

0 to 53.3 ppm

23% (55 of 238)

12% (29 of 238)

65% (154 of 238)

2016

0 to 49.5 ppm

25% (52 of 207)

10% (20 of 207)

65% (135 of 207)

 

Oaklund contacted Larry Ruzicka [RBS Farms] after receiving the 75.1 ppm result for G-026330. Oaklund arranged with Doug Ruzicka to re-sample this well, which was done in mid-September.  The result of the second sample was 49.1 ppm which is within the range of previous sample results (40.0 to 57.5 ppm).  [Note:  The 75.1 result was removed from the above table.]

2.b.13. LPNNRD Operator Certification
Rationale

No test requests have been received in September.

Staff will be meeting with extension personnel in the next couple of months to schedule certification classes for 2017.

2.b.14. Certifying Acres in Saunders and Dodge Counties
Rationale

From Chris Poole on Acre Certification in Dodge County:

Attached you will find a list of landowners in Dodge County that have not returned their Acre Certification forms or that we have not had contact with in regards to those forms. A total of 58 Letters, comprising 93 Acre Certification packets, were sent at the end of August with a due date of 9.28.2016. To date, we have received a little more than half back. There are 27 unique landowners responsible for the outstanding 41 Acre Certification packets. In Saunders County I was extremely successful in locating tenants for the landowners that never contacted LPNNRD by calling adjacent landowners.  However with harvest upon us everyone is busy. This leaves two options, issue a Notice of Cease and Desist now against any field that has not returned, or postpone the Notice of Cease and Desist until after Harvest and attempt to contact the tenant to complete the certification.  if the later fails then send a Notice of Cease and Desist prior to next irrigation season.

After some discussion, Water Committee members recommended to wait until after harvest before pursuing any compliance issues.

On a related note, staff met with NDNR officials about the modification of irrigation wells. The people in the Registration Division like our system of modification so well they want to implement it as a standard for all NRDs to follow. They also mentioned that our Acre Certification form was by far the most comprehensive and well thought out form they have seen to date and would like to use it as a model for future efforts.

Attachments
2.c. CHEMIGATION
Rationale

No new updates.  For 2016 we have 478 renewals and 98 new permit applications for a current total of 576.  Inspections for 134 renewal permits and 95 new permit applications have been completed.

2.d. LIVESTOCK WASTE PERMITS
Rationale

The LPNNRD has received two livestock permit applications from DEQ since the last Water Committee meeting.

 Name Livestock  Type of Permit  Legal Description  County 

Arlynn Runge

2358 East 83rd Steet

Columbus NE 68601

Swine

14,870 Head

3,943 A.U.

Modification of Existing Permit SE1/4, Section 27, T18N, R1E Platte

Schwartz Wilke Site 1

32296 190th Street

Sleep Eye MN 56085

Swine

1,666 Head

666.4 A.U.

Modification of Existing Permit SE1/4 of SE1/4, Section 1, T19N, R1E Platte








 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Description of permit application

  • Arlynn Runge is expansion on existing operation of Swine >55 pounds of 4,800 head (1,920 A.U.) with additional 4,500 head (1,800 A.U.) to a new total of 9,300 head (3,720 A.U.).  They also will have Swine <55 pounds of 5,570 head (222.8 A.U.) Received August 30, 2016)
  • Schwartz Wilke Site 1 is just adding 6 head of Swine >55 pounds.  (Received September 8, 2016.)  This is believed to be a misprint and likely is really expanding by 600 head or more.

 

3. GROUND WATER PROGRAMS
3.a. DECOMMISSIONED WELL PROGRAM
3.a.1. Well Estimates
Rationale

No new wells has been reviewed and approved by Gottschalk for decommissioning since the last Committee meeting.






3.a.2. Plugged Wells
Rationale

No wells have been plugged, reviewed, or ready for cost share payment approval this month.

3.b. LOWER PLATTE NORTH NRD GROUND WATER STUDIES
3.b.1. Eastern Nebraska Water Resources Assessment (ENWRA)
Rationale

Katie Cameron, ENWRA coordinator, recently finished sampling the bedrock monitoring wells being installed by the COE as part of their clean up efforts of the Former Ordnance Plant near Mead.

 

3.c. NEW MONITORING WELLS
Rationale

The Phoenix Group is working to provide a less expensive data link between our monitoring wells and the office. The monitoring well at the north edge of Swedeburg is currently undergoing testing.

 

3.d. GROUND WATER ENERGY LEVELS
Rationale

 

3.d.1. GWEL SQS #1 Summer Measurements
Rationale

SQS #1 Summer Measurements

Measurements were taken in early August

Inside the SQS #1 boundary
Number of GWEL wells 10.0
Range (Comparing Spring to Summer) +3.22 to -49.51
Median value -46.95

 

Outside the SQS #1 boundary
Number of GWEL wells 3.0
Range (Comparing Spring to Summer) +0.64 to -61.77
Median value 0.26

Only 3 different sites were measured outside the SQS #1, so not a good sample size for comparison.

 

3.d.2. GWEL SQS #2 Summer Measurements
Rationale

SQS #2 Summer Measurements

Measurements were taken in early to mid August

Inside the SQS #2 boundary
Number of GWEL wells 15.0
Range (Comparing Spring to Summer) +1.53 to -30.37
Median value -9.41

 

Outside the SQS #2 boundary
Number of GWEL wells 12.0
Range (Comparing Spring to Summer) +5.05 to -17.20
Median value -0.70

 

It was a good summer for rainfall in this subarea and some wells had not been turned on yet.

 

 

3.d.3. GWEL Wann Basin Subarea
Rationale

The multi-agencies with monitoring wells in the Wann area north of Ashland NE coordinated our measurements for August 25, 2016.  Attached are three key hydrographs located between the MUD well fields and the contaminate plumes from the Former Ordnance Plant near Mead showing the ground water level changes since 2003.

The MUD well field came on-line in 2008.

 

Attachments
3.e. FORMER ORDNANCE PLANT NEAR MEAD
Rationale

The COE has finished the sampling and installation of deep monitoring wells into the bedrock at the Former Ordnance Plant.  Only partial results so far but most sampling turned up negative for RDX and TCE in the bedrock.

 

4. SURFACE WATER PROGRAMS
4.a. STATE LAKES, FOR THE WEEK OF
4.a.1. Bacteria Sampling
Rationale

Week of September 19th, 2016   

Lakes that tested high for E. coli bacteria this week. E. coli levels measured above 235 colonies/100 ml of sample are considered a higher risk for illness when swimming.  Considering the more rapid changes in bacteria conditions, signs are not posted with these higher levels although DEQ wants people to be aware and use their own judgment on their use.

  • Branched Oak Lake in Lancaster County
  • Cunningham Lake in Douglas County
  • Lake North in Platte County
  • Lewis and Clark Reservoir in Knox County
  • Maple Creek Recreation Area Lak in Colfax County

 

4.a.2. Toxic Algae
Rationale

Week of September 19th, 2016

Lakes that will be on “Health Alert” this week. Even if a lake does not test above 20 ppb in the current week, it is DEQ policy that any lake that has microcystin levels over the established criterion of 20 ppb will be placed on “Health Alert” Status until such time that it has tested below 20 ppb for two continuous weeks. If a lake is on a Health Alert, signs will be posted recommending people avoid full body contact activities such as swimming, wading, skiing, jet skiing, etc. Non-contact activities such as boating, fishing, and camping are OK.  

  • Big Indian Creek Lake in Gage County
  • Rockford Lake in Gage County
  • Willow Creek Lake in Pierce County

 

4.b. USGS WATER QUALITY MONITORING ON SHELL CREEK
Rationale

Attached is an invoice from USGS for $5,600 for the water quality monitoring on Shell Creek.

Since this invoice is part of an approved contract with USGS, Water Committee motion to approve payment is not necessary.

 

Attachments
5. OTHER
5.a. TEST YOUR WELL NIGHT
Rationale

Last week Oaklund and Desirae TePoel made a presentation to Mrs Kocian’ Resources class at David City High School.  The management areas (Quality and Quantity) of the Lower Platte North were identified and Water quality sampling was the emphasis. 

Desirae and Bret will attend ‘Test Your Well Night’  on September 29, 2016 at the David City High School.  Water samples brought in will be tested for nitrate-nitrogen.

 

5.b. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC
Rationale

Tom Lichtl, Mary Wotipka, and Don Wegener were in attendance and had questions concerning their own irrigation situations.