I was asked to comment on this thread. Unfortunately, I don't have any specific information on it, but I am willing to speculate a little (rare for me!). I do know that it will not impact our operations for the Fryingpan-Arkansas Project, nor our involvement in the Flow Program every summer.
I think what Mike mentioned in the post before mine is a good assessment. I think the thing to keep in mind is the changing face of water in our state. It was good to read that the three municipalities were part of the discussions and were open about their future planning. I know they are all looking to the future and trying to make the best water decisions for their growing communities.
With that in mind, Reclamation will be releasing the Draft Environmental Impact Statement on Colorado Springs', Fountain's, Security's and Pueblo West's proposed Southern Delivery System sometime next year. Two weeks ago, we released the Draft Environmental Assessment on Aurora's proposed long term contracts for storage and exchange in the Fry-Ark Project and we started negotiating those contracts this week. So, there are a lot of developments to keep an eye on along the Arkansas.
For those reasons, the RICD seems well timed. Getting the RICD now means it could be included as part of the studied "cumulative effects" in any National Environmental Policy Act processes we or the Army Corp might have to complete in the next few years--especially if things like the Arkansas Valley Conduit and the Preferred Storage Option Plan find their footing in Congress and get passed.
Did anyone submit a comment regarding the possibility of this RICD to our public comment section of the current Aurora Draft EA or the current Draft EIS for the SDS? Both public comment sections are still open and receiving comments. We must have them in writing, but writing includes e-mail and you can send them to me.
Just a thought.