The U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) manages the Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Program, authorized by Congress in 1954. The purpose of this program is to provide technical and financial assistance to irrigation districts to plan and implement authorized watershed projects that:
This year, Congress appropriated $150 million to the NRCS Watershed Program. There are two things that irrigation districts need in order to qualify for funding under this program:
In partnership with the Deschutes Basin Board of Control, three irrigation districts are going to apply for funding from this program to complete water conservation projects: Tumalo, Swalley and Central Oregon Irrigation Districts.
The purpose of this website is to provide the public information about how to get involved in the watershed planning process.
Three irrigation districts in the Deschutes Basin are working with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), the Deschutes Basin Board of Control, Farmers Conservation Alliance (FCA), and other stakeholders to develop Watershed Plan-EAs that support irrigation modernization and provide local environmental benefits. Project partners are developing these Watershed Plan-EAs under the NRCS’ Watershed Program (also known as the Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Act of 1954 or Public Law 83-566).
The proposed projects for Central Oregon Irrigation District, Swalley Irrigation District, and Tumalo Irrigation District would convert open irrigation canals to piped and pressurized systems. The proposed projects generally intend to:
Public participation is essential to the watershed planning and environmental review process. It helps irrigation districts and agencies make informed decisions that consider the full range of environmental effects and alternative solutions.