By Patti Ferry
This month we traveled north to meet in Gleneden Beach. Eden Hall opened its doors to us and served a wonderful taco bar. We were glad to have such good attendance in the middle of summer – 48 partners in total. We had 10 first timers and 3 new people signed on to the Charter.
We heard a brief recap of the Field Trips that took place in July. Participants enjoyed seeing in-stream projects, forest lands, estuaries, and various sized water systems. A request was made for a parking lot type of collection of folks’ questions and comments to be followed up on after the trips. Tim Gross with the City of Newport is working to help plan the September field trips.
Study groups also met in June and are uncovering gaps in data. They are working on a set of technical write ups and will work on again during the September study groups. You can still join a study group if you wish by emailing the facilitator, Jeanne Nyquist. The Partnership meeting in November will include a review of the write ups.
More information on the upcoming Study Groups and Field Trips can be found at: midcoastwaterpartners.com/meeting-materials/.
We took a short break and then dove into the planning part of the meeting. Our table groups gathered around maps and looked at what those at each table felt were the priority topics to be covered, with a focus on water needs and vulnerabilities.
Anna Pakenham Stevenson from ODFW gave an educational presentation on the ecological value of water flows for fish. She talked about in-stream water rights and who may be senior or junior to a claim. ODFW is filing on streams and rivers in the Mid-Coast area for instream water rights. Currently only three state agencies can apply for water rights, ODFW, DEQ, and Parks. ODFW is also looking to balance the needs on the water during times of scarcity.
Harmony gave a quick recap on the Communication & Outreach group. We are hoping for an in-person meeting in September and Harmony is sending out a poll invite to the committee members. Three of the goals that the group is working on right now are:
- Partner to Partner Communication (e.g., partner directory)
- Peer to Peer learning (e.g., field trips)
- Retain Partners (what keeps you coming back?)
If you have any ideas on strategies or tools the Communication & Outreach group could use to achieve these goals email Harmony Burright.
A few announcements from Partners:
- The US Energy & Natural Resources Subcommittee, Water and Energy – Water Security and Drought Preparedness held a hearing on 8/2/17. Information is available at www.energy.senate.gov. The deadline for comments is August 15, 2017. Send comments, information, and data to Senator Wyden via contact information on his website.
- Oregonlakes.org is meeting in Florence the first weekend in October. This might be a good outreach opportunity for the Partnership. For more information visit www.oregonlakes.org.
- A program funding report providing information on available funding for Mid-Coast organizations is available at no cost. Please contact Tia Cavender at Tia@chaseparkgrants.com