About the 2019 Forum
What is a Healthy Working River: Pieces of the Puzzle
Sixth Annual Poudre River Forum
Friday February 1, 2019
Drake Center in Fort Collins
Many thanks to all those who helped create another awesome Poudre River Forum!
Here are the links to the speaker presentations.
- MaryLou Smith, Policy & Collaboration Specialist | Colorado Water Center, Colorado State University
- Emcee Sean Cronin, Executive Director | St. Vrain and Left Hand Water Conservancy District
HEALTHY WORKING RIVER: PUZZLES ON THE POUDRE—AN OVERVIEW OF TODAY'S PROGRAM
- What are some of those puzzles? How do different interests work together on those puzzles to get water down from the mountains out onto the plains for agriculture and urban use, and how do we keep the river healthy along the way?
WATER RIGHTS PUZZLE ON THE POUDRE - Video
- A Day in the Life of the Poudre River Commissioner—Mark Simpson, Poudre River Commissioner, Division 1, State Engineer's Office. Where water in the Poudre comes from, who has rights to use it, and how the river commissioner makes sure it goes to the right place at the right time.
- From Farms to a City: Thornton's Change Case—Emily Hunt, Water Resources Division Manager, City of Thornton. How a ten year water court had to be surmounted before water purchased from Poudre farmers in the 1980s could be transported south for a growing municipality.
- Can Carrots, Cattails, and Kayaks Co-Exist under Water Law?—Mike Shimmin, Vranesh and Raisch Law Firm (retired). A Northern Colorado water attorney tells the behind-the-scenes story of the history of legislation that makes it possible for the environment and recreation to have water rights.
- Bolstering Summer and Winter Flows as Mitigation for Storage—Jerry Gibbens, Northern Water Director of Operations. How seeking federal, state, and local permits to use their water rights on the Poudre to build the Northern Integrated Supply Project led Northern Water to a unique summer and winter flows mitigation approach.
- Who is Responsible for Poudre Water Quality?—Jerrae Swanson, City of Greeley, Environmental and Water Resources Attorney. With much of the Poudre's water ending up back in the river after we use it for agriculture and urban needs, who is responsible for overseeing its quality?
THE POUDRE GOES TO SCHOOL - Video
- Bilingual eighth graders from Greeley's Salida del Sol learning about the Poudre and Colorado water issues.
- We will take a look at a video produced by Poudre River Forum committee members Corey Odell and Eric Brown featuring a diversity of perspectives on that puzzling question—drawn from interviews they conducted with folks the length of the river.
- Audience Perspectives on "What is a Healthy Working River" A chance to share our own perspectives with those at our tables on "What is a healthy working river" and then hear from one another about anything that surprised us or broadened our thinking.
POUDRE PIONEER AWARD - Video
- On behalf of The Poudre Runs Through It, Robert Ward presented the annual Poudre Pioneer Award to recognize achievements toward the goal of making the Poudre River a premier example of a healthy working river. The 2019 recipients were Loren Maxey and Tom Shoemaker.
LOREN MAXEYLoren Maxey has lived and contributed to the Poudre River Basin for over 60 years. He has dedicated his life to agriculture, business, and service. Here are the highlights of Loren's long career of service in the Poudre Basin.
- Loren grew up on a farm in Illinois and graduated from high school in 1950. He enlisted in the US Navy and served in the Korean War.
- Loren moved to Colorado in 1958 and purchased a farm east of Greeley. This began his long-term relationship with irrigated agriculture with water from the Poudre River.
- Loren later moved to a farm north of Fort Collins and began his relationship with irrigation under the North Poudre Irrigation Company system that continues today.
- Loren started the Maxey Trailer Company in Fort Collins in 1969. This business continues to thrive and serves the agricultural and construction sectors.
- Loren served on the Fort Collins City Council from 1987 to 1993. The City acquired a significant number of water rights during this period which provides great security for the community today.
- Loren served on the Larimer County Fair Board from 1990 to 2012.
- Loren is the president of the Board of Directors for the East Larimer County Water District (ELCO) and has served on the Board since 2000.
- Loren is the president of the Board of Directors for the North Poudre Irrigation Company.
- Even at the age of 86, Loren continues to stay active in both the municipal and agricultural sectors. His leadership has helped ELCO become a thriving water district serving approxiamtely 20,000 people. The North Poudre Irrigation Company has a shareholder base of both municipal and agricultural users. Loren's experience in both sectors has led to a successful balance and an increase in the yields to all shareholders.
- Loren has dedicated his life to service and has created tangible results in both the agricultural and municipal water sectors in the Poudre Basin. It is in view of Loren's long record of service and involvement in the Poudre Basin, that the Poudre Runs Though It Study/Action Work Group (PRTI) presents him with the 2019 Poudre Pioneer Award.
TOM SHOEMAKERTom Shoemaker served as Natural Areas Director for the City of Fort Collins from 1992-2001. He was the visionary and the heavy lifter who got the natural areas program approved, funded, and up and running. His successor writes that "it was only in going through his vast files after he left that I began to comprehend the incredible amount of heavy lifting that was required."
- Tom was instrumental in acquiring 22 parcels consisting of 861 acres along the Poudre over a ten year period, laying the ground work and establishing relationships which lead to the acquisition of many more parcels along the Poudre, and setting the stage for restoration and stewardship of these parcels.
- Those who worked with Tom can recount numerous stories he told about the actual work of acquiring those parcels. It took a tremendous amount of partnership forging, and it took a real vision of what the enhancements could do for the Poudre and our enjoyment of it. He shared that vision with others such that the work he started continues today.
- Most, if not all, of these acquisitions presented considerable challenges to be overcome. "it is so easy to forget the people that did so much heavy lifting and contributed so much to our success today." Here is a list of Poudre properties that Tom Shoemaker acquired during his tenure.
- 1994—River Edge, Udall
- 1995—Arapaho Bend, Cottonwood Hollow, Magpie Meander
- 1996—Butterfly Woods, Cottonwood Hollow, Kingfisher Point
- 1997—Cattail Chorus, Cottonwood Hollow
- 1998—Cottonwood Hollow, Kingfisher Point, McMurry
- 1999—Kingfisher Point, Riverbend Ponds
- 2000—Arapaho Bend, Kingfisher Point, Running Deer
- 2001—River's Edge
- For his leadership in pursuing these acquisitions, and then overseeing the stewardship, planning, and ultimate public access to many of these lands, the PRTI presents the 2019 Poudre Pioneer Award to Tom Shoemaker.
OTHER 2019 POUDRE PIONEER AWARD NOMINEES
- John Coppom—Chair, InSTEM Station Projet at the Poudre Learning Center
- Daylan Figgs—Program Manager for Planning and Special Projects, City of Fort Collins
- Ben Gannon—Research Associate, Colorado Forest Restoration Institute at CSU, PhD student, CSU's Department of Forest and Rangeland Stewardship
- North Forty News—2018 series on the Poudre River by Gary Raham
- Colorado Forest Restoration Institute—A science-based outreach and engagement organization hosted by the Department of Forest and Rangeland Stewardship and the Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State University
PREVIOUS POUDRE PIONEER AWARD RECIPIENTS2018: Colorado Senator Peggy Reeves and U.S. Senator Hank Brown
- We annually recognize those who have contributed substantially to furthering our goal, contributions both tangible and inspirational. The PRTI will be soliciting nominations of the 2020 awards in the fall. Please consider nominating those you know who are making a contribution to the work-health balance we seek for the Poudre River.
- Barbier's book, Water Paradox, to be released by Yale University Press in February 2019, is touted as "a radical new approach to tackling the growing threat of water scarcity." He will share perspectives for us to keep in mind as we tackle water puzzles on the Poudre.
APPLYING CREATIVITY AND COLLABORATION TO ADDRESS THE PUZZLE OF THE LOSS OF WATER FOR AGRICULTURE - Video
- Regional Storage on the South Platte to Stave off Buy and Dry?—Sean Cronin, South Platte Basin Roundtable. What is the South Platte Basin Roundtable and how is the Poudre involved in it? How a study the roundtable is conducting addresses the loss of irrigated agriculture by investigating a regional Ag/Urban/Environmental approach to storing water in times of high flows before it flows out of the state to Nebraska.
- New Cache Water Marketing Strategy: A Pilot Project—Greg Kernohan, Ducks Unlimited, and Brett Bovee, WestWater Research. How New Cache la Poudre Irrigating Company is working with Ducks Unlimited and others to pilot a unique water sharing strategy, with funding from the Beueau of Reclamation.
- Larimer County Ag Advisory Board's Take on the Need for Ag/Urban Water Dialogue—Zach Thode, Manager, Roberts Ranch. The need for cities, towns, and ditch companies to work together to ensure reliable deliveries in both wet and dry years for both urban and Ag needs.
WHAT'S THE [EVOLVING] PICTURE ON THE PUZZLE BOX LID? - Video
- What are the looming challenges we face on the Poudre, and are there ways we might begin to look at them differently than in the past? A panel of experts will address the following questions and then participate in a facilitated dialogue between themselves and then the audience:
- How will the Poudre be affected by climate change and by the water supply crisis on the Colorado River?—Jennifer Gimbel, Senior Water Policy Scholar, Colorado Water Center, Colorado State University
- What is the nexus between affordable housing and the price of water from the Poudre?—Patrick McMeekin, Partner, VP of Land Development, Hartford Homes
- How the Town of Windsor's "dual system" water requirement is helping them face their water challenges in light of tremendous growth—Kristie Melendez, Mayor of Windsor
- Is it time to face up to the ecological damage our pioneering spirit has caused to the Poudre River? How might we prevent additional damage and achieve significant gains on the healthy river front?—LeRoy Poff, Professor, Department of Biology, Colorado State University
- How might we move beyond our geographical and sector boundaries to think regionally about our economic future and the role water plays in that?—Roy Otto, City Manager, City of Greeley
Contact us at PoudreRiverForum@gmail.com.