June 30, 2009
Hello Arroyo Partners:
Did you see the Arroyo Colorado on the news recently? KGBT covered the recent Texas Stream Team event at Estero Llano Grande reviewing water quality data. The video and news release are posted on the project website.
Speaking of news items, have you received your latest issue of the Arroyo Colorado Watershed Partnership Newsletter? If you don't receive this free newsletter and would like to, sign up for it online.
I have received quite a few comments regarding the possible shrimp farm project that was discussed in the previous bimonthly update. The LLMF is on board if anything should develop and the Arroyo Colorado Habitat Workgroup expressed their support and would appreciate any feedback that you can provide regarding this project. This is obviously a very complicated project, but worth it. I will keep you posted as things develop and if you have information or would like to be more closely involved, please contact me.
During June, three meetings have been held to discuss the sustainability of the Arroyo Colorado Watershed Partnership. We appreciate the time and effort put forth by this small, but active committee. We are working with the Lower Rio Grande Valley Development Council to form a cohesive group to address water quality and related environmental issues in the valley. The meetings have been very productive and we will present our recommendations at the next steering committee meeting as well as send out a more detailed summary soon.
The Habitat workgroup also met this month and received updates on the La Feria and San Juan wetland projects. La Feria is almost finished with construction and was conducting a final walk through last Friday. Despite encountering some unexpected setbacks, (buried trash, needed more clay), San Juan was able to proceed and began construction March 25 and estimates that the wetland will be completed by the end of August. Both cities expressed the need for a wetland maintenance workshop or training to educate the City employees that will be responsible for the wetlands. If this is a training need held by others, please let me know and we'll try to host something locally.
At the request of Alan Johnson, a watershed stakeholder, the habitat workgroup also revised the Harlingen Aeration Project. In support of the project, the workgroup is looking into applying for the necessary permits to proceed with the project.
Please mark your calendar for these upcoming workgroup and steering committee meetings:
- The Wastewater Infrastructure Workgroup meeting tentatively scheduled for July 17 in conjunction with the TCEQ Biosolids Management workshop.
- The Agriculture Issues Workgroup meeting: July 27 from 9 am to 12 pm at the Citrus Center.
- The Steering Committee meeting: July 27 from 4:30 pm to 7 pm at the Citrus Center.
- TCEQ is hosting a workshop titled, "The Future of Biosolids Management in the Lower Rio Grande Valley," on Friday, July 17 in McAllen. For more information, contact Claudia Lozano at firstname.lastname@example.org
- The 2009 Texas Stream Team Statewide Meeting of the Monitors will be held July 17-19 in New Braunfels, TX. For more information, a detailed agenda, and/or to register, visit the meeting website or call toll free 877.506.1401.
- The Arroyo Colorado Grant Opportunity Workshop date has been changed to August 11-12. The change in date was made to ensure we would have as many speakers as possible. It has also grown into a two day workshop. The workshop will be from 9 am to 2 pm on both days at the City of Pharr International Convention Center. The focus of the workshop is to seek funding opportunities that would help us implement the watershed protection plan. The Arroyo Colorado Watershed Partnership, Rural Economic Development Group of the Texas Department of Agriculture, the LRGV TPDES Stormwater Task Force, TAMUK and the City of Pharr are hosting the event. The workshop is available to all Arroyo Colorado stakeholders, local governments and schools that are interested in helping clean up the Arroyo Colorado. Lunch will be provided, several outreach booths from invited agencies will be on location, and the seminar is free. I want to encourage everyone to attend this workshop.