April 25&27, 2016 RID board meeting Highlights

Highlights of the meeting of the Board of Directors of the Raymond Irrigation District held Monday April 25, 2016 commencing at 1:00 PM in the RID Board Room and recessing that day at 5:00 PM.  Also a continuation of the meeting on April 27, 2016 commencing at 9:00 AM in the RID Board Room.

Attending: Byron Wilde Chairman, John McKee Vice Chairman, Craig Palmer Director, Gordon ZoBell, General Manager and recording clerk, Mark Jensen Operations Manager and Kelvin Kado, Office Manager as required.

IRP 2307 – W#5 phase 4 – Construction is completed, the line has been tested and is ready for operation.

IRP 2308 – Ortho Photo’s – The photos have not be downloaded but will be very soon.

IRP 2321 W#5 phase #5 – working on procuring easements

Maintenance report – Mark Jensen showed the board a slide presentation of work completed under the district’s maintenance and the IRP program over the past month.

Irrican Power – Review of April 7, 2016 Irrican board meeting held at the SMRID offices. The Ridge water quality initiative group are looking for funding regarding the development of the area on the extreme west end of the reservoir. There will be a settling pond trees bushes and habit developed aimed at helping with water quality of drainage water entering the reservoir at that site. The irrican board approved giving a donation of $40,000 subject to there being irrigation district and Irrican interpretive information booklets available at the kiosk of the site. The Three partner districts were also asked to consider with their board if an additional donation could be made directly from the districts. After discussing this possibility on motion by Craig Palmer the board approved allowing an RID excavator and operator to assist with the project for 40 hours free of charge. This represents a $7100.00 in kind donation from the RID toward the project. Water is on in the main canal and the 4,5,6 and Chin plants are running today, Raymond will be up tomorrow. Some minor problems experienced at the 4,5,6 plant. Power pool prices are very low. URICA is working for us now.

RID financial – Kelvin Kado – I have been getting a bit of a break since our AGM and year end were over. Easements for the Pipe dream project has been completed and will need to be signed by the land owners. Review of our investments, as we saw for our year end there was a small (return) increase for the 2015 year. Just to compare January 2015 value was $3,223,368.15 and January 2016 was $3,256,982.42. Increase of $33,614.27 (1%) Value as of March 31, 2016 was $3,305,089.49 an increase of $48,107.07 (1.4%) since January 2016. Better return the past couple of months. We are hoping for an improvement this coming year. Budget prepared, a few discussion points are noted.

Expansion Plebiscite in the RID – Gordon noted that he is had met with Jennifer Nitschelm. More modeling is required before the plebiscite should be held. The board agreed to carry on with more modeling as noted. Gordon noted that it would be several months before the modeling is completed.

RID seminar – Feedback was good regarding the seminar. The board asked that the seminar continue into the future.

RID Annual Meeting – Held March 17. There was very good attendance and input from water users. Very good meeting.

Directors Items – John McKee noted that Bob McGlenn would like to move his delivery point for his pivot on the Etzikom coulee. It was noted that a formal discussion has not been undertaken and that Bob should notify the district in writing of his intentions. Craig Palmer noted that he had been approached by Glen Hofer regarding old water rights that existed on the Hofer parcel at one time but are no longer there. Craig was instructed to have Glenn call the manager for an explanation. Gordon noted that a group representing the Village of Stirling, Towns of Raymond, Magrath and Cardston, will be holding a Chautauqua in August of 2016. The Raymond group will be showing horse breaking. They are looking for a $500.00 donation. This initiative is aimed at promoting tourism in the area. On motion by John McKee the board approved the request.

Provincial Budget review – Gordon, Mark and Kelvin listened to the conference call held with the Minister of Agriculture on April 14, 2016 which was Provincial Budget day. The minister noted that IRP funding would remain at 19 million per year for all the collective districts. He also noted that the Growing Forward grants for new irrigation equipment will remain in place for the budget year as well. This was all good news.

AIPA Directors meeting held April 11, 2016 – Gordon noted that he had attended this meeting. All of the proposed AIPA by-laws and proposed changes were approved accepting by-law #9 which was tabled. A proposal from Mison and Associates regarding building relationships with the NDP Government was turned down. It is felt that more hands on work is required from AIPA directors. Janelle Villenueve of AB AG and Forestry went over options available to keep the water quality study continuing. Each director was asked to take back to their own boards the information she presented and to ask for a further 9 cent levy over and above the 30 cent current fee per acre for AIPA funding. On motion by Byron Wilde the RID approved the 9 cent special levy for the water quality study. It was also noted that AIPA is planning a tour this summer with AIPA and NDP officials. A smaller plane will be available and only limited seating is available. More information to come. It was also noted that AIPA would like to make Five, 5 minute videos on short irrigation good news stories from water users. These will appear on the AIPA Facebook page. The AIPA conference will be held November 14 to 17 this year. Irrigation Council have 3 directors whose terms expire in May of 2016. It was also noted that amendments to the ID Act have been slow in coming and have not been dealt with yet.

Main Canal Advisory Committee – Byron and Gordon attended this meeting held April 7, 2016 at the SMRID offices. With the $1.00 per acre budget increase, finances are in good shape for the coming season. Water will be available in early May. It should be noted that since this meeting took place water has been in the Main canal since April 13, 2016 and available to some farms as early as April 22. The RID will make water available as needed. The next meeting will be held July 28, 2016 commencing at 9:30 AM at the SMRID office building.

At this point the meeting ended for the day at 5:00 PM and will reconvene on April 27 at 9:00 AM at the RID board room.

The meeting reconvened at 9:00 AM April 27. All were in attendance.

Terminable Water Users on the Etzikom Coulee – A discussion was held regarding the inefficiencies and challenges in delivering water to the terminable users of Etzikom coulee. A letter has been sent to the terminable users requesting them to call the RID office at least 3 days prior to starting irrigating and 3 days prior to shutting down.

Household Purposes Agreement –Plan 9711687 Block 1 Lot 3 – NE-11-6-21-W4 – Approved by the board on motion by Byron Wilde.

Household Purposes Agreement –  Plan 9711687 Block 3 Lot 2 – NE-11-6-21-W4 – Approved by the board on motion by Byron Wilde.

Household Purposes Agreement –  Plan 9711687 Block 3 Lot 4 – NE-11-6-21-W4 – Approved by the board on motion by Byron Wilde.

Household Purposes Agreement –  Plan 9711687 Block 3 Lot 5 – NE-11-6-21-W4 – Approved by the board on motion by Byron Wilde.

RID Return Flows – Gordon went over the last seasons return flow data. It was noted that return flows are far above what they should be. It was also noted that there is natural drainage water flows included in the figure as well as Town of Raymond Lagoon dumping. He noted that he and Mark met with Lloyd Healy of AB AG and our ditch riders, Phil Wilde and Cody Heggie. All will work harder to decrease the return flows for the coming season. There was also discussion regarding the ordering of water on and off by water users. The Manager was asked to send a letter to all RID water users reminding them of this and reviewing why it is necessary.

RID Bylaws – 2016 –

The Budget by-law for the 2016 year was approved by the board on motion by John McKee and carried.

Bylaw 2016-1 being a rate by-law was approved by the board on motion by Craig Palmer and carried.

Bylaw 2016-2 being an agreements by-law was approved by the board on motion by John McKee and carried.

Bylaw 2016-3 being an honorarium by-law was approved by the board on motion by Byron Wilde and carried.

Bylaw 2016-4 being an election date by-law was approved by the board on motion by Craig Palmer and carried.

Bylaw 2016-5 being a capital asset charge by-law was approved by the board on motion by Craig Palmer and carried.

Bylaw 2016-6 being a capital charges by-law was approved by the board on motion by John McKee and carried.

Resolution 2016 -1 – appointed Byron Wilde as a member of the board of directors of the RID for one year.

Resolution 2016 -2 – appointed Doug Wilde as district auditor for 2016.

All of the above by-laws were read three times prior to final approval. It should be noted that the RID rate per acre charge was set at $12.00 per permanent irrigation acre.

RID employee – wage review – On motion by John McKee the board voted to increase employee wages for 2016 across the board by 2% retroactive to April 1, 2016. The motion was carried.

Next meeting date – Wednesday May 18, 2016 commencing at 9:00 AM in the RID board room.

Motion to adjourn and time meeting ended. – There being no further business the meeting adjourned at 1:00 PM on motion by Craig Palmer.