Spring is coming early in 3/4 of national parks, according to a new study. Awesome? Not so much. As flowers bloom earlier every year, it’s disrupting the link between the wildflowers and the arrival of birds, bees, and butterflies that feed on and pollinate the flowers. In Shenandoah, an earlier spring is giving invasive plants a head start, and they’re displacing native wildflowers, leading to costly management issues.
Before the 1960s almost everything about living openly as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) person was illegal. New York City laws against homosexual activities were particularly harsh. The Stonewall Uprising on June 28, 1969 is a milestone in the quest for LGBT civil rights and provided momentum for a movement.
Vine Creek Ranch at Death Valley National Park. Steady drought and record summer heat make Death Valley a land of extremes. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.
Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
S. 1477 - Conservation and Restoration of Waterways and Dams
Statement of Larry Todd, Deputy Commissioner for
Policy, Administration and Budget
Bureau of Reclamation
U.S. Department of the Interior
Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee
Subcommittee on Water and Power
July 26, 2007
Mr. Chairman and Members of the Subcommittee, my name is Larry Todd, and I am Deputy Commissioner at the Bureau of Reclamation. Thank you for the opportunity to appear today to present the Administration's views on S. 1477, a bill to authorize funding for repair to the Mancos Project (Project) and referred to as the Jackson Gulch Rehabilitation Project (Rehabilitation). This bill would require that 80% of the costs of project rehabilitation activity that would be authorized under this bill's provisions be borne by taxpayers. Project rehabilitation is currently the contractual obligation of the Mancos Water Conservancy District (District) to fulfill pursuant to its standing O&M contract. Relieving the District of this obligation would set a precedent for other projects across the country in need of rehabilitation. For these reasons, the Administration opposes this bill.
The Project is located in southwestern Colorado near Mancos, consisting of a 10,000 acre-foot reservoir, an inlet canal, and an outlet canal. This Project provides supplemental irrigation water for approximately 13,746 acres of irrigated farmland. Additionally, this project provides municipal and industrial (M&I) water for the Town of Mancos and the surrounding rural area, and to Mesa Verde National Park.
The Project was completed in 1948. During the twenty-year period from 1942 to 1962, the District paid Reclamation in advance for O&M costs for Project facilities. However, in 1962, responsibility for O&M of the facilities was fully transferred to the District as provided for in the Repayment Contract. Title to Project facilities remains with the United States.
The proposed legislation would authorize $6,452,311 for the federal share of the cost of rehabilitating the 59-year old Project. This amount represents 80% of the costs of rehabilitation. Reclamation has previously assisted the District in cost estimates for the new work and has also assisted in reviewing their current project needs for a long term rehabilitation plan. The District has completed a study through a private engineering firm to assess the Project needs and to prepare a study for the repair/replacement of facilities. The requested funds appear sufficient to make the needed repairs and improvements, as outlined in the District's plan.
Reclamation agrees that there is a need for rehabilitation of the Project. Due to its age, major rehabilitation is needed on the inlet and outlet canals and associated structures. Delivery of agricultural and M&I water could be affected if these repairs are not completed. The District, however, is solely responsible for the operation, maintenance, and replacement of these facilities, pursuant to their contract and should not be relieved of that obligation.
Mr. Chairman, this concludes my testimony. I am pleased to answer any questions.