Office of the Secretary Manager

Kittitas Reclamation District Board of Directors Meeting

October 11, 2018 Minutes


The Board of Directors of the Kittitas Reclamation District (KRD) met in Regular Session on October 11, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. Attending the meeting were Division Four Director and Chairman Larry Bland, Division Two Director and Vice Chairman Ed Wakkuri, Division One Director Mark Hansen, Division Three Director Fred Schnebly, Division Five Director Paul Weaver, Secretary Manager Urban Eberhart, Assistant Manager Kevin Eslinger, KRD Field Supervisor Bob Main, KRD Lands Clerk & RRA Specialist Keli Bender, KRD Treasurer Stacy Berg, Legal Counsel Jeff Slothower. Also, in attendance were KRD land owners Mark Charlton and Colleen McQuary.

The agenda was approved with the addition of an executive session for reasons consistent with RCW 42.30.110(1)(i):(i). The motion was made by Director Hansen and the second was made by Director Wakkuri. The motion passed unanimously.


The minutes for the September 4, 2018 Board Meeting were approved with a motion made by Director Schnebly and the second was made by Director Weaver. The motion passed unanimously.


Public Comment: Landowner Colleen McQuary inquired about when the District was planning to pressurize lateral 9.9. Mr. Eberhart explained that the current focus was to line the main canal from Robinson Canyon Rd and going upstream. The lining project is expected to take several years but once this is complete the District will begin working on the laterals to pressurize them.


Water Master Report: As of October 11, 2018, the storage capacity is at 24%, the canal diversion was cut by 100 feet today. We are down to 529 feet overall, 385 of that is for consumptive use. There has not been a lot of demand. Storage is at 96% of average. Precipitation to date is 6.25 inches. Director Weaver made a motion to set the cut off date for water deliveries on October 15, 2018.  A second was made by Director Wakkuri, the motion passed unanimously.


The KRD will continue supplementation of the upper Yakima tributaries with either pass-through water or Bureau Conservation Water for as long as needed. Once the construction starts on the South Branch, the supplementation will stop for Manastash Creek. We may need to organize a fish salvage event with various groups who will assist with the relocation of the fish.     


On Little Creek, which had previously gone dry, we are passing 12 cfs of water. A spring chinook red nest has been found at the lower end of the creek. Having this spring chinook return to the creek is encouraging and reinforces that the efforts we are making are having a positive impact on improving salmon runs.


Maintenance Report: Mr. Main reported that the maintenance crews have continued to work on hunter gates and canal access roads. They are continuing the clearing and working on undershots along the main canal. The spraying is complete. There were some concrete tiles that had pulled back on the Billeter Spill which are being worked on. Further repairs are still ongoing to extend it. The shop building had all the brick mortar repaired.      


Secretary Manager’s Activity Report: In the effort to ensure that each of the political candidates are aware of the Yakima Integrated Plan and the KRD, Mr. Eberhart has been involved in several briefings with the candidates.  


On September 19th, the KRD hosted a tour for the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.


The Tri-State Meeting in Boise, ID was on September 21st. There were Washington, Oregon and Idaho Water Users in attendance. Mr. Eberhart provided a presentation to the attendees and reported on the Yakima Integrated Plan and the Columbia Basin Partnership.


There was a Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee Columbia Basin Partnership Meeting in Portland, OR on October 2nd and 3rd. In these meetings we making the very credible and strong argument that investing in the Columbia River System and the Yakima Basin will result in more Chinook Salmon that will help the southern population of Orca’s.


On October 8th and 9th, Mr. Eberhart met with the Columbia River Group in Boise, ID.


Mr. Eberhart attended Governor Evans Lifetime Achievement Award Ceremony in Seattle, WA on October 10th.


The Teanaway Advisory Committee met in Cle Elum on October 11th.  This was the final recreational planning meeting.


Mr. Eberhart will be presenting about the KRD and the Yakima Integrated Plan to the Washington AgForestry Class in Vancouver, WA.


The John Keys Tour will be conducted on October 15-17th. There will be several additional people who will be in attendance for the dinner on the 15th.


The USBR Historian, Kelsey Doncaster is presenting “The Lost Photographs of the KRD”, at the Kittitas County Museum on October 15th.


On October 26th there is a Ruckelhaus Meeting in Olympia, WA.


Mr. Eberhart will be attending a Conservation Advisory Group Meeting in Yakima on November 29th. Mr. Eberhart will be speaking on the KRD’s conservation program and tributary supplementation and storage program.


There is a Columbia River Group Meeting in Seattle on October 29th and 30th.


Continued progress has been made for the Upper Yakima Storage Feasibility Study that is being done under the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act.


The KRD has an agreement with USBR for the 2018 WaterSmart Water Marketing Grant. KRD will be working with Department of Ecology on a signed contract to match the funds.


KRD received a Water and Energy Efficiency Grant for the South Branch Phase I project. Director Weaver made a motion to accept the $300,000.00 grant from WaterSmart. A second was made by Director Wakkuri, the motion passed unanimously.


KRD comments were sent into the ORCA Task Force.


There is an issue with debris flowing down the Naneum Creek and settling above the canal. The KRD and Kittitas County Public Works will be working jointly to remove the debris. The project will begin once the permitting process has finished.


North Branch Canal Lining Project Phase II will be discussed in Executive Session.


The KRD was unable to reach an agreement under the sole source option for the North Branch Canal Lining Project Phase III.  


The bid opening for the South Branch Canal Lining Phase I Construction was done on October 5th. There were several bids that were very close. The low bidder did not conform to the bidding rules and withdrew their bid because of a bidding error. The next bidder was N.A. Digerstrum who was awarded the bid. Director Weaver made a motion to approve the low bidder of N.A. Digerstum in the amount of $1,923,500.00 and allow Mr. Eberhart to sign the contract. The second was made by Director Wakkuri, the motion passed unanimously. It should be noted that there was an option in the contract to extend the footage of the project if the weather and time constraints allow.


The South Branch 13.8 Manastash Water Ditch Association (MWDA) Connection Design Contract Package is expected to be ready for a bid announcement in early November. 


The Yakima Basin Focused Managed Aquifer Recharge Assessment is $363,052.00 for a comprehensive ground water storage assessment. The intent for this project is to identify ground water storage capability. The study is expected to be completed by October of 2019. The funding is coming from the state of Washington Department of Ecology.


Treasurer’s Report: The Directors’ monthly payroll vouchers were presented for signatures. Summary Vouchers for the August 2018 expenses and the September 2018 payroll which included check numbers 42593-42690, direct deposit numbers 9901484 through 9901501 in the sum of $283,574.64 were approved with a motion made by Director Wakkuri and the second was made by Director Schnebly. The motion passed unanimously.


Old Business: The certificate of delinquency was filed for the remaining 4 delinquent accounts. If it should be necessary to have a foreclosure sale, it is expected to be on the third Friday in January.


Director Wakkuri asked if there had been any updates on the Mohar Rd slide. Mr. Eberhart reported that Jacobs Engineering is evaluating that at this time. No further updates were given.


Director Weaver posed a question as to what the KRD policy was for pedestrian traffic on the North Branch access roads. The canals are for KRD operating and maintenance activities with special permission granted at times for farmers. Periodically crossing permits are allowed.


New Business: Mr. Eberhart reported that the USBR notified KRD that the Storage Cost Allocation for 2018 are projected to be $625,000.00. This was meant to be informational only at this time. Further information will be forthcoming. 


Treasurer Berg is scheduled to attend a Federal Grants Requirements and Management Training Class on November 15th which is being presented by the Washington State Auditors Office in Ellensburg, WA.


Lands Clerk & RRA Specialist Keli Bender presented two short plats in Division 3. Land owner, Ron Mitchell who has 4 lots and Kevin Keno who has 4 lots. Director Schnebly made a motion that KRD approve the short plats under the stipulation that they meet the KRD requirements. A second was made by Director Wakkuri, the motion passed unanimously.


Field Supervisor Bob Main asked the board to consider hiring temporary employees for Rope Access Level II and III. It is required to have Rope Access Level II and III employees on site when the KRD Level I employees are working in tunnels and siphons. The goal is to eventually be self-sustainable however it will take several years of experience to get the hours necessary to advance. The estimated costs for the two employees for the upcoming construction season was $25,279.00. Director Weaver made a motion to hire the Rope Access Level II and III Temporary Employees. A second was made by Director Schnebly, the motion passed unanimously.


Mr. Eberhart asked the board to consider leasing a space for a training facility for the Rope Access Team. There is a potential commercial space that consists of 1600 square feet. Director Hansen made a motion to lease the property in a one year lease for $1,200.00 a month. A second was made by Director Weaver, the motion passed unanimously. 


Legal Counsel Slothower reported that his office has been working on an Administrative Policy Manual which would allow all the policies kept in one place and accessible to both the employees and the public. During this process there were some policies that have been used for some time and it is unclear if the policies were formally adopted. At a future meeting there will be a series of policies that will be presented and the board will be asked to review and formally adopt them.


Other Business: The Board adjourned to Executive Session at 2:18 p.m. for 30 minutes per RCW 42.30.110(1)(i):(i) there was a motion made by Director Hansen and a second made by Director Wakkuri. The motion passed unanimously. The Board returned to Regular Session at 2:48 p.m. with a motion made by Director Wakkuri and the second was made by Director Weaver. The motion passed unanimously.


Director Hansen made a motion to hire, Larsen, Berg, Perkins PLLC to represent KRD. A second was made by Director Weaver, the motion passed unanimously.


Director Hansen made a motion to change the date for the upcoming board meeting to November 6, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. A second was made by Director Schnebly, the motion passed unanimously.


All business having been concluded the meeting was adjourned.



Mr. Bland KRD Board of Directors Chairman



Mr. Eberhart KRD Secretary Manager