February Board Meeting Summary

February 5 2024

(HOLDREGE, Neb.)  - The Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District’s board of directors heard reports on water conservation efforts and education from an irrigation water management specialist at Monday’s board meeting.

Curtis Scheele, irrigation water management specialist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service, presented his annual conservation report, summarizing activity related to the federal Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).  He also reported on the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSTwP).

Scheele then gave the board an overview of the local UNL Testing Ag Performance Solution (UNL Taps) team’s yield from this past season.  He presented the directors with results from a nitrogen testing program that was conducted across the state by UNL featuring pivot bio solutions.  In addition, he highlighted the weekly irrigation newsletter that is emailed out throughout the summer.  Central provides a weekly update in that emailed newsletter that reaches over 700 customers.    

Also at Monday’s board meeting:

  • A bid was approved for $85,525 to Nutrien Solutions for purchase of chemicals for the 2024 irrigation season.
  • The board approved a bid of $366,760 for a 2024 CAT 330-07 Excavator from NMC, Inc. of Doniphan, Neb.
  • Directors gave approval for the purchase of two ¾ ton pickups and four ½ ton pickups from Pony Express Chevrolet Buick of Gothenburg, Neb.
  • It was approved by the board to give $3,750 from Lake Improvement Fund to Johnson Lake EMS for Life Saving Device Installation.  They also approved committing $15,596 to the Johnson Lake Playground Committee to assist with installation of a new well to supply a drinking station and underground sprinkler system.  Directors approved adding Merriweather and Lakeview Acres to the current transfer, renewal and rental schedule policy.
  • Government and Public Relations manager Alex Linden updated the board on LB1260 which was introduced by Senator Mike Jacobson that would allow a director of a public power and irrigation district to discuss and take action on some related matters when they have a residential lease agreement or a water service agreement with the district.  A hearing on the bill is scheduled for Feb. 7 with the Natural Resources Committee.
  • Civil Engineer Tyler Thulin reported that Lake McConaughy’s elevation was at 3238.8 feet on Monday (60.8% capacity), which is up 1.1 feet since Jan. 26.  Inflows are around 1,475 cubic feet per second (cfs) and outflows are about 150 cfs.  Thulin reported that 1,775 cfs is being diverted at Central’s diversion dam, which is well above the FERC requirement.  Most of the water is flowing from the South Platte River.  Snowpack in the upper North Platte basin is currently at 84% of median average, the lower North Platte is at 65% and 94% in the South Platte basin.