Arroyo Colorado

February 16, 2005

Dear Arroyo Partners,

Partnerships continue to evolve! During the last two weeks we participated in two Coastal Expo events were 30 new individuals signed up to be kept informed or participate in our efforts to improve the quality of water in our Arroyo Colorado. I also had information exchange meetings with our area Texas Cooperative Extension Agents and our Regional Colonia Ombudsmen to discuss how we could work together in this watershed protection effort. More partnerships are being formed and as one of our members said, "It is exciting to be seeing all this come together". I agree!

Last week Roger Miranda, TCEQ, and I met with leaders from two (2) mid-valley municipalities and a public utility as we continue to gain understanding of the issues associated with the different communities and their wastewater infrastructure and treatment facilities. Much insight was gained during these meeting and tours as we gather information for the wastewater component of our Arroyo Colorado Watershed Protection Plan. Again, all three entities pledged support of our watershed protection plan and we thank them for their time and participation. The information we gathered will be shared at our next Wastewater Infrastructure Work Group Meeting.

In regards to the agricultural component of our plan, three separate pre-proposals for Federal 319(h) grant money were accepted for the next stage of the funding process. In the next few months we hope to finalize funding for outreach and education, for additional data gathering and monitoring, and for cost-share assistance to our farmers. Thanks to all our stakeholders that have been working on this.

Finally, there are a couple of events that you might not want to miss. Wednesday February 23, 2005 is the Valley Water Summit. It will be held all day at the Marine Military Academy in Harlingen, Texas. Cost is $49 and this includes a great line of speakers, continental breakfast, lunch, and a reception. Go to www.valleywatersummit.org for registration and details. And on February 26, 2005 from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm, the Texas Cooperative Extension is sponsoring "Rainwater Harvesting: Capturing Nature's Best for Your Landscape". That event cost $15 and will be held at the Echo Hotel in Edinburg, Texas. Pre-registration deadline is February 23. Call Barbara Storz at (956) 383-1026 or (800) 638-8239 for more details and registration.

Thanks for your interest,

Laura