July 19, 2007
Dear Arroyo Partners,
First of all, I want to remind you of a series of Partnership meetings happening next Tuesday. The Agricultural Issues Work Group will meet from 9 am - 12 noon, the Habitat Restoration Work Group will meet from 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm, and the Steering Committee and general Partnership meeting will happen from 4:30 pm - 7:00 pm. All meetings are open to the public and all will be held in the Rio Red Classroom of the Texas A&M Kingsville Citrus Center located at 312 N. International Blvd., Weslaco, Texas. Meetings will highlight plan strategies and will essentially kick-off the implementation of the Arroyo Colorado Watershed Protection Plan. Updates on ongoing projects will be presented with the Four Cities Wetland Project highlighted at the evening Steering Committee Meeting. As usual, snacks will be provided at the 4:30 pm social with the actual Steering Committee meeting beginning at 5:00 pm. I hope you can make at least one of these meetings!
Another important notice is a job opening for Program Assistant. In the last update, I introduced you to Conrad Herrera who was to serve as our new grant writer/data analyst. He left for a more permanent job, therefore that position is open. As you may know, my position as program coordinator and the program assistant are grant funded positions. At this time, there is funding for two years with the intent of securing additional funds to keep these positions going. For that matter, part of my current job is to work with the Steering Committee to ensure the long-term sustainability of our Partnership and part of that means salaries for the worker bees. We have a few options such as establishing our own 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization or to umbrella with an existing organization. We will be figuring this out over the next year and for now, if you know of a qualified person interested in being Program Assistant for the implementation of the ACWPP, go to http://greatjobs.tamu.edu. Search positions and enter Texas Water Resource Institute (TWRI) as the hiring unit. Applications for this position will be accepted through August 8, 2007. Know that in the meantime, TWRI is providing a full-time staff person to assist on this project. Grants are being developed, and I am getting the needed support.
On a final note, many thanks go out to Texas Watch for their work in the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV). Texas Watch now has about 30 newly certified volunteer water quality monitors in the LRGV. Partnering with Texas Watch to establish volunteer monitoring programs on the Arroyo Colorado and associated drainages is a part of our ACWPP. Texas Watch committed to establish at least 10 sites in the Arroyo Colorado Watershed. The volunteer monitors will provide basic water quality data such as temperature, pH, conductivity and dissolved oxygen, and the data will be accessible on their Web site, www.texaswatch.geo.txstate.edu/. Check out their Web site and let us know if you would like to be a volunteer monitor.
Hope to see you soon,