Board Meeting Minutes April 2, 2024

THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF THE TALENT IRRIGATION DISTRICT met in an regular session at the office of the district located at 104 West Valley View Road, Talent, Oregon, on the above date.  Mike Winters called the board meeting to order at 7:00 a.m.


Mike Winters —————-     President
Jeff Hogan ——————–    Director
Wanda Derry —————–    Secretary/Manager
Bo Bergren ——————-    Assistant Manager
Bob Wilson ——————-    Foreman


Ricky Clark ——————-    OSU Extension Service
Matt Borman —————–    Bear Creek Orchard Manager and MID Board Member
Bill Swartz ——————–    Water User at 787 Anderson Creek Rd.
Dan Carballo —————–    Water User at 4500 Pioneer Rd.
Brian Sephton —————-    Water User at 7121 Dark Hollow Rd.
Dawn Watson —————-    Water User at 4491 Pioneer Rd.
Kerry Vargas —————–    Water User at 4455 Pioneer Rd.
Sean Naumes —————–    Naumes, Inc. and MID Board Member
Michael Moore —————    Water User at 2700 Quail Run Rd.


Jeff Bohn ———————-    Vice President


The Minutes of the Regular Board Meeting of March 5, 2024 were considered.  Director Hogan   made a motion to approve the minutes as presented.  The motion was seconded by President Winters and unanimously passed.


The Board reviewed the Claim Sheet for February for check numbers 2359 through 2427 and the itemized list of Visa charges for the month. A motion was made by Director Hogan to approve the Claim Sheet and the list of itemized Visa charges for February as presented.  The motion was seconded by President Winters and unanimously passed.  Both President Winters and Manager Derry signed the Claim Sheet.


The Board was supplied with copies of the Financial Summary, Itemized Budget Comparison, Assessments Receivable, Balance Sheet and Profit and Loss Statement for February 2024.

Manager Derry stated that the budget should be at 42% for February and the Income is at 41% and Expenses are at 38%. Prior to yesterday, collections were slightly behind February 2023, but there were a lot of payments made yesterday.


Manager Derry went over the following current water supply numbers as of today:

Howard Prairie            27,358 acre feet or 45% of capacity

Hyatt Lake                    8,787 acre feet or 54% of capacity

Emigrant Lake            22,360 acre feet or 57% of capacity

She stated that the snowpack for February at the Howard Prairie Base has been low and as of this week, there is no snow at the Base. If there is no snow to melt off, there will not be any natural streamflow to use to start the irrigation season. The district will start drafting the reservoirs down as soon as we start the season. She stated that we hope to hold off starting the irrigation season until after the first of May.

Manager Derry stated that our water supply is slightly better than last year, but we also want to plan on holding water over for next year. The only reason our supply is this good is because of the 28% (32,348 acre feet) carryover from 2023.

JO LYNNE HANSEN AND WAYNE – 5204 S PACIFIC HWY- 38-1W-15D 3800 – 13.50 AC. AND 38-1W-15D 3900 – 10.80 AC. FOR A TOTAL OF 24.3 AC. – DISCUSS WATER THEFT

Jo Lynne Hansen and her husband Wayne attended to discuss water theft in their area. Jo Lynne read a prepared statement from her cell phone to the Board. She stated that their property is at the end of a small irrigation line (T-8), and everyone on their line is not getting enough water. New and different crops have come into the area and they supposedly use less water because the do not flood irrigate. If their delivery pipe is ¾ full of water for the entire rotation they everyone would be able to irrigate properly. The water delivery has been so low that she has only been able to get one cutting of hay off her field for the last 3 years and she stated this had nothing to do with the drought. The neighbor from the south (Tony White on Don Marsh’s property) has told them he will take all the water in the line and they will not get any. Wayne stated that there is also a problem with the schedule on how long each property gets to irrigate. Their property and the Fujas property have the same amount of time as the Don Marsh property and Don has less acreage. People on Hartley Road take all the water all the time. Tom Perdue lost all water last year because of no volume to get the water to his place. One neighbor is digging a pond deeper and other people have installed wells. Wayne said the people at 426 Hartley Road are over irrigating and some of the ground has sunken down due to the excessive water use.

Foreman Wilson stated that the people at 426 Hartley Road fenced their property cutting off access to the ditch, have told the Ditch Rider, Francisco, that they will let the district put a lock on the gate so we have access to the ditch. Foreman Wilson stated that he will make an appointment with the people at 426 Hartley so he can look at the irrigation system they have installed to see how it operates. They have new plumbing inside their compound ant we cannot see what is going on.

Foreman Wilson also stated that the district can put a steel lid on the box on the Marsh property so that no one can mess with the board in the box, unless they cut our lock.

President Winters stated that we will make a plan to address their concerns, but for now we need to move on to the other Public Comments.


Ricky Clark – OSU Extension Service

Ricky stated that in conjunction with the Bureau of Reclamation, 5 new Agrimet stations have been installed. The one closest to us is near the Port of Entry on Interstate 5 in Ashland.

Ricky also stated they have a person on staff that is conducting water quality studies to identify and enhance water quality. In a previous study in another area, he was able to determine that the canals ended up being a buffering system and improved the water quality. He wants to conduct a similar study in the district. Ricky stated that he will be in contact with Manager Derry soon.   

Matt Borman – Bear Creek Orchard Manager and MID Board Member

Matt stated that the blooms are 3 weeks early this year and he expects the blooms will probably finish blooming today since it is supposed to be 80° today. He stopped sending the Board the soil moisture information because the soil moisture is full. Everything is in good condition right now; however, we do not know what the April weather will be like. He stated that he will let us know when they need water. Typically, even in a non-drought year, they do not need to do a full irrigation until May.

Bill Swartz – 787 Anderson Creek Road, Talent

Bill is on the McDonald System and is wondering what the early streamflow looks like on that system. Manager Derry stated that we have not been up to the McDonald System recently so we do not know what it looks like up there now. She stated that since Mount Ashland received a lot of snow this winter, she assumes that the McDonald System did also. Manager Derry will update the website with information on the McDonald System as soon as we can.

Bill stated that he asked over a year ago to have the minutes from the board meetings posted on the website. He said he is a caregiver and it is hard for him to make the board meetings. Manager Derry stated that it is up to the Board if they want the minutes posted on the website. President Winters stated that we have been so short staffed in the office for a long time that we did not have people available to do much updating on the website. President Winters stated that this will be discussed later.

Dan Carballo – 4500 Pioneer Road, Medford

No comment

Brian Sephton – 7121 Dark Hollow Road, Medford

Brian stated that he wanted to thank Foreman Wilson for having the crew do all the work through his property to stop the leaks from the canal. We will not know if the repairs worked until we turn water into the ditch for the season. He also stated that Francisco is doing a great job cleaning the West Canal. The canal has not been cleaned this good for over three years.

Dawn Watson – 4491 Pioneer Road, Medford

No comment

Kerry Vargas – 4455 Pioneer Road, Medford

No comment

Sean Naumes – Naumes, Inc. and MID Board Member

No comment

Michael Moore – 2700 Quail Run Road, Medford

Michael asked where the district is in obtaining the $5 million dollars of Congressionally Authorized funding. Manager Derry stated that she just signed a contract with the Farmers Conservation Alliance (FCA) to go through the application process to obtain the funding. The first meeting with FCA will be held on Thursday. President Winters stated the system is so onerous to get the money in our hands. No one understands how much of a process this is. It is going to take a long time to obtain the funding and most of the people in the board room will not see the projects happen. President Winters stated that the district is looking into shooting a liner inside the Billings Siphon pipe rather than digging the pipe up to replace it. This looks to be much more cost effective to stop the leaks in the pipe, but we are still researching this option.


Manager Derry stated the lease for the Kershaw Pond expires on October 29, 2024 with an option to renew for an additional 25 years. Last month the Board requested Foreman Wilson attend the meeting to discuss the importance of the pond to help determine if the Board wants to renew the lease. Foreman Wilson stated the pond is very beneficial to the operation of the Talent Canal. It helps keep water to the bottom end all the way down to Knowles Road. The pond can supply the end of the canal for 3 to 4 days. He highly recommended the Board renews the lease for the pond. With that said, a motion was made by Director Hogan to authorize renewing the lease for another 25 years. The motion was seconded by President Winters. Manager Derry will work on getting the necessary paperwork completed.


Manager Derry stated that most of the work done in March was cleaning canals. The Ashland Canal is completely done, the East Canal is about threequarters done. One excavator is working up from the lower end of the West Canal and we will be putting another machine at the top of the canal working downstream so it should be cleaned within a couple weeks. Then we will put multiple machines on the Talent Canal to get it cleaned.

Manager Derry stated that the Chamberland shotcrete job is done. We have now shotcreted the East Canal through his property. Last week she received a call from Mr. Chamberland complaining that the two headgates on his property are leaking and he wants us to repair them to stop the leaks. Manager Derry stated that we are looking to these issues.


Biological Opinion

No update


Manager Derry stated the attorneys are continuing to prepare the KBA summary memorandum and participate in numerous hearings with Judge Bushong and other Klamath Basin interests.

Jordan Ramis invoice for 2/29/2024 – $9,397.50 ÷ 3 = $3,132.5 per district

Water Right Regulation

Manager Derry stated the attorneys are continuing on-going discussions with the Water Resources Department and Forest Service regarding the installation of a structure to send water to Klamath.

Jordan Ramis invoice for 2/29/2024 – $8,265.00÷ 3 = $2,755 per district



Manager Derry stated the change was made to the contract so all potential court proceedings will be held in the courts in Eugene rather than Portland. She signed the contract on March 12th and returned it to FCA for their signature. They returned the contract with their signature on March 15th. A complete copy of the contract was provided to the Board. The kickoff meeting with FCA will be held on April 4th.


Emigrant Dam Low Flow Bypass Pipe

Manager Derry provided the Board with the email we received from Tom Heintzman from the Bureau’s Bend office regarding the future installation of the low flow bypass pipe. The original plan, up until now, has always been to suspend the bypass pipe from the concrete ceiling above the 54” penstock in the tunnel. With this last visit, which is their 60% design plan, the Bureau is proposing to install the bypass pipe on top of the penstock in the tunnel mounting it with a saddle/roller design. This new idea has never been mentioned in the past, and quite frankly, we are very concerned about this putting additional weight on the penstock, which already has one joint that has a leak that we have been dealing with for a few years.

The other major concern about this project is they keep talking about us needing to lower the lake level for the work to be done for the safety of the crews working in the tunnel. This is something that we absolutely do not want to do.

There being no other business to come before the Board, President Winters adjourned the meeting at 7:27 a.m.

DATE:   May 7, 2024

ATTEST:  Wanda Derry Secretary/Manager

Mike Winters, President
Jeff Bohn, Vice President
Jeff Hogan, Director

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