LRNRD approves irrigation transfer measure
ALMA – In an effort to help farmers squeezed by dry conditions and a strict limit on irrigation pumping this summer, the Lower Republican Natural Resources District will allow limited transfers of water rations from one field to another.
Meeting in special session here Tuesday, members of the district board of directors voted unanimously to approve an amendment allowing the transfers. Director Brad Wulf of Red Cloud was absent and excused.
Tuesday's vote amended a March 14 board resolution enacting a "hard cap" of 10.5 inches of irrigation pumping per certified acre in the Lower Republican district for this year.
The LRNRD encompasses Furnas, Harlan, Franklin, most of Webster and southern Nuckolls counties in Tribland.
Under Tuesday's amendment, the board will allow irrigators to transfer up to 2 inches of this year's 10.5-inch usage maximum from one field to another.
Of the amount of the allocation transferred for use elsewhere, 80 percent could be pumped at the new location, while the other 20 percent would be given up as a "compact compliance reduction." For example, a farmer who gave up the full allowable transfer amount of 2 inches on Field A would be able to pump just 1.6 inches of that onto Field B.
The transfers could occur between certified acres anywhere within the LRNRD, without regard to distance between them or the streamflow depletion factors associated with the respective fields – so long as the transfers were between common tenants or common ownerships.