UPPER ELKHORN NATURAL RESOURCES DISTRICT

BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING

May 23, 2016 – 7:00 PM

O’Neill, Nebraska

 

 

CALL TO ORDER, STATEMENT OF ADVERTISEMENT AND OPEN MEETING LAW NOTIFICATION:

The regular meeting of the Board of Directors was called to order at 7:05 P.M. by Chairman Dale Wiles.  The meeting was advertised in the Holt County Independent, the official UENRD newspaper.  The Open Meetings Act was posted for public review.    

 

DIRECTORS PRESENT:

Gary Bartak                     Mark Carpenter            Chris Dierks                     Curtis Gotschall             Jerry Heithoff

Ted Hughes                     Jim Keller                        Gene Kelly                       John Meuret                    Michael Moser

Roy Stewart                     Chip Whitaker                 Keith White                     Dale Wiles        

                           

DIRECTORS ABSENT:

Jake Dvorak                                  

                           

STAFF PRESENT:

Dennis Schueth, General Manager

Kate Tillotson, Water Resources Manager

Kelly Kloppenborg, Water Resources Technician

Andrea Fisher, Administrative Secretary

Beth Walsh, Information & Education Coordinator

Stephanie Butler, Bazile Groundwater Management Coordinator

 

GUESTS PRESENT:

Jim Mathine, NRCS Spencer

Bill Babutzke, Holt County Weed Superintendent

Bruce Ofe, Antelope County Weed Superintendent

Terri Krysl, Boyd County Weed Superintendent

 

ADOPTION OF AGENDA:

]It was moved by Jim Keller and seconded by Chris Dierks to adopt the agenda.  AYE:  Bartak, Carpenter, Dierks, Gotschall, Heithoff, Hughes, Keller, Kelly, Meuret, Moser, Stewart, Whitaker, White & Wiles.  NAY:  None.  ABSTAIN:  None.  ABSENT:  Dvorak.  MOTION CARRIED.

 

MINUTES:

The minutes of the April Meeting were reviewed by the Directors. [It was moved by Gene Kelly and seconded by Ted Hughes to approve the minutes of the April Meeting.  AYE:  Carpenter, Dierks, Gotschall, Heithoff, Keller, Kelly, Meuret, Whitaker, White & Wiles.  NAY:  None.  ABSTAIN:  Bartak, Hughes, Moser & Stewart.  ABSENT:  Dvorak.  MOTION CARRIED.

 

TREASURERS REPORT:

The April treasurers report was reviewed by the Directors.  [It was moved by Roy Stewart and seconded by John Meuret to approve the April Treasurers Report.  AYE:  Bartak, Carpenter, Dierks, Gotschall, Heithoff, Hughes, Keller, Kelly, Meuret, Moser, Stewart, Whitaker, White & Wiles.  NAY:  None.  ABSTAIN:  None.  ABSENT:  Dvorak.  MOTION CARRIED.

PUBLIC FORUM-INPUT:

None

 

HOLT COUNTY WEED CONTROL AUTHORITY – BILL BABUTZKE (INVASIVE PLANT SPECIES PORTION OF LB 1038):  Bill Babutzke, Holt County Weed Superintendent; Bruce Ofe, Antelope County Weed Superintendent; and, Terri Krysl, Boyd County Weed Superintendent attended the board meeting to discuss the funding opportunity allowed through the passage of LB 1038 containing LB 711 which reinstates the appropriation and Riparian Vegetation Management Task Force.  Members of the Northeast Nebraska Weed Management Area (Antelope, Boyd, Cedar, Dixon, Holt, Knox, Pierce and Wayne counties) are visiting the area NRDs to see if they would be willing to contribute matching funds for the grant money available through LB 711.  These funds would be used to map invasive species within the area of a waterway and removal of these invasive species along the Niobrara and Elkhorn rivers.  Questions regarding the grant application and deadline and dispersal of funds were asked by board members.  

 

AGENCY & STAFF REPORTS:

NARD Report:  The next board meeting is scheduled for June 13 in York in conjunction with the basin tour. 

 

DNR Report:  Dennis Schueth reported that Garry Anderson phoned in a report.  Garry reported that there will be another opportunity for projects to apply for the Water Sustainability Fund in July.  This will allow previously unfunded projects to update and submit their proposals for consideration. 

 

NRCS Report:  Jim Mathine’s report was mailed out to the Directors.  Jim reported that they are wrapping up the Conservation Stewardship rankings and will be developing the contracts for the highest ranking applications.  They are also beginning their compliance reviews on wetland areas and highly erodible lands.  These normally take place after planting to measure residue.  Jim also discussed the importance and purpose of LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) to the NRCS offices and reported that they will be acquiring data for Holt and Antelope counties later this year.  As for personnel issues:  the O’Neill NRCS office will have a summer engineering intern working with them; the O’Neill District Conservationist position will be re-advertised; they will have a new position in the O’Neill office for a Compliance Specialist; and, Jim reported that the secretary position in the Ainsworth office is still vacant. 

 

RC&D Report:

North Central RC&D:  No Report. 

Loup Basin RC&D:  No Report. 

Northeast RC&D:  No Report.     

 

Information & Education Report: Beth Walsh’s report was mailed out in the Directors packets.  Beth reported that the District has received two applications for the Nebraska Range Youth Camp.  These students will both receive a $100 grant to attend.  Dennis Schueth reported that the District has received pricing information on the NET television program featuring Nebraska’s NRDs.  Staff will review this information and purchase some of the DVDs to distribute in the UENRD.   

 

 

Water Resources Report and ELM Update:  Kate Tillotson’s report was mailed out in the Directors packets.  Kate reviewed the preliminary static water level report from this spring.  It takes approximately 6-7 weeks to measure all the static water level sites and depends somewhat on the weather.  The general trends across the district have not changed and she will have a full report next month.  Kate also discussed the benefits of LiDAR for the UENRD and how helpful it would be for the static water levels program.  She also reported that Jake Morten and Colin Nemec would be attending the Groundwater Technician testing workshop next week.        

 

Bazile Management Area:  Stephanie Butler’s report was mailed out in the Directors packets.  Stephanie reported that there will be a Well Protection meeting June 2 in Creighton; and, a meeting June 15 with all four NRD Water Committees to discuss standardizing NRD phase rules, regulations and triggering mechanisms. Stephanie also reported that she has taken a teaching job and will be leaving as the project coordinator in July. 

 

EXCUSED ABSENCES:

[It was moved by Ted Hughes and seconded by Roy Stewart to excuse the absence of Jake Dvorak.  AYE:  Bartak, Carpenter, Dierks, Gotschall, Heithoff, Hughes, Keller, Kelly, Meuret, Moser, Stewart, Whitaker, White & Wiles.  NAY:  None.  ABSTAIN:  None.  ABSENT:  Dvorak.  MOTION CARRIED.

 

COMMITTEE REPORTS:

Legislative, Finance and Planning Committee:  The committee met prior to the board meeting.  Roy Stewart reported that the committee had some questions concerning the bill to the Nebraska State Climate Office regarding the weather stations. 

 

Water Resources & Watershed Committee:  The committee met prior to the board meeting. 

 

Personnel, Education, Promotion and Equipment Committee:  The committee met prior to the board meeting and discussed:  the Bazile Project Coordinator upcoming vacancy; the possibility of a shared position with a UNL Forester; Explorer replacement; Gopher Heaven; salary negotiations; and, an ACE Camp grant request.  [It was moved by Ted Hughes and seconded by Gene Kelly to approve an ACE Camp Grant for $190 to Logan Sanford.  AYE:  Bartak, Carpenter, Dierks, Gotschall, Heithoff, Hughes, Keller, Kelly, Meuret, Moser, Stewart, Whitaker, White & Wiles.  NAY:  None.  ABSTAIN:  None.  ABSENT:  Dvorak.  MOTION CARRIED.  

 

COALITION/TASK FORCE UPDATE:

 

ADMINISTRATIVE REPORT: 

Dennis Schueth’s report was mailed out in the Director’s packets and a copy is kept on file in the NRD office.  Dennis Schueth revisited the request from the county weed superintendents as to whether or not the Board would like to take any action at this time.  [It was moved by Ted Hughes and seconded by Keith White to allocate $5000 in matching grant funds if they receive the grant.  AYE:  Gotschall, Hughes, Kelly, Moser, White & Whitaker.  NAY:  Bartak, Carpenter, Dierks, Heithoff, Keller, Meuret, Stewart & Wiles.  ABSTAIN:  None.  ABSENT:  Dvorak.  MOTION FAILED.  

 

The next board meeting will be held June 27, 2016 at 7:00 PM at the NRD office in O’Neill.  

 

[It was moved by Jim Keller and seconded by Ted Hughes to adjourn the board meeting at 9:10 PM.  AYE:  Bartak, Carpenter, Dierks, Gotschall, Heithoff, Hughes, Keller, Kelly, Meuret, Moser, Stewart, Whitaker, White & Wiles.  NAY:  None.  ABSTAIN:  None.  ABSENT:  Dvorak.  MOTION CARRIED.