Groundwater Management Strategies Discussed at Lower Elkhorn NRD

Groundwater Management Strategies Discussed at Lower Elkhorn NRD


NORFOLK, Neb. – Groundwater quality and quantity are top priorities for the Lower Elkhorn Natural Resources District (LENRD). Through monthly meeting, the LENRD Board and staff work to develop and implement management plans for the future of Nebraska's natural resources.

During LENRD's July meeting, the board adopted proposed changes to the Groundwater Management Area Rules and Regulations, which become effective Aug. 24, 2019.

“The changes will further outline the rules and regulations by adding some definitions for terms that relate to current groundwater management strategies to complement the recent adoption of the Lower Platte River Basin Plan and the LENRD’s Integrated Management Plan,” said LENRD Assistant Manager Brian Bruckner.

A complete summary of the proposed changes is available at the LENRD office in Norfolk and on the district’s website.

Recently, area flooding has caused erosion of several streambanks, so the Board approved a Streambank Stabilization Project Policy.  Due to the extensive river system across the district, the board made the decision to focus resources on public infrastructure. The policy states that the district will need to partner with one or more public entities on streambank stabilization projects in the future.

The LENRD Board is also waiting to hear if funding has been secured through a grant with the Federal Emergency Management Agency for flood protection for the city of Battle Creek.

Two reservoirs have been proposed for the area south of Battle Creek -- a 160-acre pool costing approximately $17 million and a 1,200-acre pool for $36 million. Battle Creek’s City Council met in May and voted to explore options for a 1,200-acre flood-control reservoir on the south side of Battle Creek.

“There are multiple benefits to think about when considering a project of this size," said LENRD General Manager Mike Sousek. "First and foremost is flood reduction. Along with that are the recharge benefits as well as recreation.”

The next LENRD board meeting will be Thursday, Aug. 22, at 7:30 p.m. at the LENRD office (1508 Square Turn Boulevard in Norfolk).

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