Director’s December Update

December 2, 2008

This is the Director’s update sent to DCNR employees yesterday.

The Governor and legislative leaders have been meeting during the last few weeks and appear to have determined, at least conceptually, a way to address the Fiscal Year 2009 (ends June 30, 2009) budget shortfall. There is no silver bullet here and the short term solution will include a number of financial actions including likely additional budget reductions. The good news is that these cuts may not be as deep as previously feared. The legislature will again meet in special session on December 8 and 9 to ratify these solutions. While this will hopefully be a “stopgap” through next summer, the 2009 regular session (which begins in February 2009) will have to address the Fiscal Year 2010 and 2011 shortfalls which are projected to be well over $1 billion.
The division administrators are meeting regularly with Deputy Director Kay Scherer and me on the budget situation and ways to address our portion of the shortfall. As always, the welfare of our most valuable department resource, our employees, are our first priority.
Read the rest of this entry »


TROA Documentary to Air Throughout the West

November 17, 2008

Pyramid Lake

Landmark video explains complicated issue in simple terms

(Submitted news) — The  Truckee Meadows Water Authority (TMWA) and KNPB Channel 5 Public Broadcasting present “Taming the Turbulent Waters,” a half-hour documentary celebrating the historic signing of the Truckee River Operating Agreement (TROA), which occurred on Sept. 6, 2008. The next airing is Nov. 23 at 7:30 p.m. on Ch. 5.

“Taming the Turbulent Waters” will air this November and December on Reno’s KNPB and PBS stations across the west. The program explains the more than 20-year history of TROA, including how U.S. Sen. Harry Reid brought all parties to the negotiating table, and the benefits to the water system and to residents of the Truckee Meadows. It includes interviews with Sen. Reid, TROA negotiators and representatives from the signatory parties.

The documentary was produced by Arrowhead Productions in conjunction with TMWA and Sen. Harry Reid’s office.

For general TROA information, visit or call (775) 834-8080.

Water quality award presented to Roland Westergard

October 13, 2008


Allen Biaggi, DCNR director, and former Director Roland Westergard

Allen Biaggi, DCNR director, and former Director Roland Westergard

CARSON CITY, Nev. — Longtime water resource advocate Roland Westergard was recognized today by the State of Nevada for his lifetime of dedication to the protection of the state’s precious water resources.


The Nevada Division of Environmental Protection (NDEP) presented its 2008 Wendell McCurry Excellence in Water Quality Award to Westergard at a ceremony at the offices of the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) in Carson City, with members of his family and many friends and colleagues in attendance. The award recognizes his nearly 50 years of work in water quality protection and water conservation education, especially relating to Lake Tahoe.

Westergard is past director of DCNR and played a key role in the Truckee River Operating Agreement (TROA), which was signed last month after 20 years of negotiation. A major focus of TROA is water quality.

As a member of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency’s (TRPA) governing board from 1983 to 1998, including being chair for two years, Westergard was instrumental in the development of several milestone water policies, including the bi-state compact with California and the development of water quality standards that establish beneficial uses of the lake and criteria to protect those uses. The compact was approved Congress and signed into law in 1990. Read the rest of this entry »

Milestone reached in Truckee River deal (RGJ)

January 24, 2008

The government has released a final environmental study on a comprehensive management plan for the Truckee River, a key milestone in 17 years of negotiations over the river’s future.

The U.S. Department of Interior and California Department of Water Resources report concludes there will be no significant adverse impacts from the Truckee River Operating Agreement.

“This is a huge step for everyone involved,” said Allen Biaggi, director of the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. “It resolves many of the water issues on the Truckee River and they have been very contentious. We’ve been working very hard to get to this point.”

 Read the complete story at the Reno Gazette-Journal.