|(HOLDREGE, Neb.) – The Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District board of directors approved a proposal from RJH Consultants, Inc., of Englewood, Colo., for the design of a weighted filter seepage management system at Elwood Reservoir during Monday’s monthly board meeting.
According to the RJH proposal, work will include additional data collection and evaluation of seepage areas, engineering design for the solution, preparing the final design documents, and document preparation for regulatory review. The total cost for the project proposal is $271,712. The work is estimated to take five months to complete.
Earlier this year, Central observed areas where seepage was occurring near the pump station. Subsequent geotechnical investigations and study of soil conditions at the site revealed the nature of the seepage issue and led to development of an approach to correct the situation.
Two other sites closer to the dam will be included in the project to ensure the continued safe operation of the facility.
Also at Monday’s board meeting:
· Irrigation Operations and Maintenance Assistant Supervisor Dusty Way presented an end of irrigation season report. Way said the average irrigation delivery this year was 8.92 inches per acre. In addition, 94,883 acre-feet of groundwater recharge from project operations occurred during the 2020 irrigation season.
Way also reported that there was 10.36 inches of rainfall measured at the Holdrege gauge during the six month growing season (April through September), which is the third lowest on record since Central began recording such data in 1957.
· Civil Engineer Tyler Thulin reported that Lake McConaughy is currently at elevation 3,240.6 feet above sea level, or 63.3 percent of capacity. Inflows are currently around 1,350 cubic feet per second, and outflows are 25 cfs while Kingsley Hydroplant is offline for a maintenance outage.
· Hydraulic Project Operations Manager Cory Steinke reported that the Jeffrey dredge has been repaired and will be placed back in the lake to begin dredging operations until icing occurs later this winter.
· Government and Public Relations Manager Jeff Buettner announced that Central’s virtual tour video has been updated and is available for public viewing via a link on the District’s website homepage.
· Electrical Project Operations Manager Eric Hixson reported that the new diesel generators installed at Jeffrey, Johnson No. 1 and Johnson No. 2 hydroplants were commissioned last week, which gives the hydroplants along the Supply Canal the ability to “black start” the hydroplants.
· Public Relations Assistant Holly Rahmann announced that this week (Oct. 4-10) is Public Power week, which will be highlighted on Central’s social media pages as the week goes on.
· Irrigation Operations Manager Dave Ford announced his upcoming retirement after 34 years with the District. Ford’s official retirement date will be January 25, 2021. Ford also noted that the irrigation division is currently in maintenance mode, which includes the installation of five new road crossings this fall. Three of the crossings have already been completed.
· General Manager Devin Brundage discussed preliminary work into investigating options for a wholesale power sales contract for electricity generated at the three hydroplants along the Supply Canal. Brundage also mentioned upcoming discussions for a drought strategy planning with leaders from the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources and Tri-Basin Natural Resource District.