Rate Adjustments for Indian Irrigation Projects, 26759-26766 [2011-11165]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 89 / Monday, May 9, 2011 / Notices a new 638 contract to complete the transfer process, or use an existing 638 contract, as applicable. I. Reporting Requirements for Award Recipients 1. Quarterly Reporting Requirements During the life of the EMDP project, quarterly written reports are to be submitted to the DEMD project monitor for the project. The beginning and ending quarter periods are to be based on the actual start date of the EMDP project. This date can be determined between DEMD’s project monitor and the tribe. The quarterly report can be a one- to two-page summary of events, accomplishments, problems and results that took place during the quarter. Quarterly reports are due 2 weeks after the end of a project’s fiscal quarter. WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with NOTICES 2. Final Reporting Requirements • Delivery Schedules. The tribe must deliver all products and data generated by the proposed assessment project to DEMD’s office within 2 weeks after completion of the project. • Mandatory Requirement to Provide Reports and Data in Digital Form. The DEMD maintains a repository for all energy and mineral data on Indian lands, much of it derived from these energy and mineral development reports. As EMDP projects produce reports with large amounts of raw and processed data, analyses and assays, DEMD requires that deliverable products be provided in digital format, along with printed hard copies. Reports can be provided in either Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat PDF format. Spreadsheet data can be provided in Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Access, or Adobe PDF formats. All vector figures should be converted to PDF format. Raster images can be provided in PDF, JPEG, TIFF, or any of the Windows metafile formats. • Number of Copies. When a tribe prepares a contract for energy and mineral development, it must describe the deliverable products and include a requirement that the products be prepared in standard format (see format description above). Each energy and mineral development contract will provide funding for a total of six printed and six digital copies to be distributed as follows: (a) The tribe will receive two printed and two digital copies of the EMDP report. (b) The DEMD requires four printed copies and four digital copies of the EMDP report. The DEMD will transmit one of these copies to the tribe’s BIA VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:23 May 06, 2011 Jkt 223001 Regional Office, and one copy to the tribe’s BIA Agency Office. Two printed and two digital copies will then reside with DEMD. These copies should be forwarded to the DEMD offices in Lakewood, Colorado, to the attention of the ‘‘Energy and Mineral Development Program.’’ All products generated by EMDP studies belong to the tribe and cannot be released to the public without the tribe’s written approval. Products include all reports and technical data obtained during the study such as geophysical data, geochemical analyses, core data, lithologic logs, assay data of samples tested, results of special tests, maps and cross sections, status reports, and the final report. J. Requests for Technical Assistance The DEMD staff may provide technical consultation (i.e., work directly with tribal staff on a proposed project), provide support documentation and data, provide written language on specialized sections of the proposal, and suggest ways a tribe may obtain other assistance, such as from a company or consultant specializing in a particular area of expertise. However, the tribe is responsible for preparing the executive summary, justification, and scope of work for their proposal. The tribe must notify DEMD in writing that they require assistance, and DEMD will then appoint staff to provide the requested assistance. The tribe’s request must clearly specify the type of technical assistance desired. Requests for technical assistance should be submitted well in advance of the proposal deadline established in the DATES section of this solicitation to allow DEMD staff time to provide the appropriate assistance. Tribes not seeking technical assistance should also attempt to submit their EMDP proposals well in advance of the deadline to allow DEMD staff time to review the proposals for possible deficiencies and allow time to contact the tribe with requests for revisions to the initial submission. II. Information on BIA’s Web Site You may find additional information about the EMDP program from our Web site, such as sample proposals, frequently asked questions, and general information about the services the DEMD office and provide to tribes. To locate our web page, navigate to the Indian Affairs Web site at http:// www.bia.gov. Along the top tabs, click on the tab ‘‘Who We Are’’. On that page you will find a heading ‘‘Our Organization Structure’’. Locate the ‘‘Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED)’’ link and click on PO 00000 Frm 00075 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 26759 that. Under the ‘‘Spotlight’’ section there will be a new announcement titled ‘‘Energy and Mineral Tribal Grant Program (EMDP)’’. Clicking on that link will take you to the page containing the EMDP program information. The full link to the same page is as follows: http://www.bia.gov/ WhoWeAre/ASIA/IEED/DEMD/TT/TF/ index.htm. Copy the above link address and paste it into the address box on your Internet browser program. Dated: April 27, 2011. Jodi Gillette, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Indian Affairs. [FR Doc. 2011–11196 Filed 5–6–11; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–4M–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Indian Affairs Rate Adjustments for Indian Irrigation Projects AGENCY: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior. ACTION: Notice of Rate Adjustments. The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) owns, or has an interest in, irrigation projects located on or associated with various Indian reservations throughout the United States. We are required to establish irrigation assessment rates to recover the costs to administer, operate, maintain, and rehabilitate these projects. We are notifying you that we have adjusted the irrigation assessment rates at several of our irrigation projects and facilities to reflect current costs of administration, operation, maintenance, and rehabilitation. SUMMARY: Effective Date: The irrigation assessment rates shown in the tables as final are effective as of January 3, 2011. DATES: For details about a particular BIA irrigation project or facility, please use the tables in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section to contact the regional or local office where the project or facility is located. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: A Notice of Proposed Rate Adjustment was published in the Federal Register on November 1, 2010 (75 FR 67095) to propose adjustments to the irrigation assessment rates at several BIA irrigation projects. The public and interested parties were provided an opportunity to submit written comments during the 60-day period that ended January 3, 2011. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 26760 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 89 / Monday, May 9, 2011 / Notices Did the BIA defer or change any proposed rate increases? Yes. The 2011 Operation and Maintenance (O&M) rate for the Riverton Valley Irrigation District of the Wind River Irrigation Project was proposed in the Federal Register at $17.00 per acre. After further review, BIA discovered that the 2011 O&M rate for Riverton Valley Irrigation District should have been at $16.00 per acre pursuant to the Memorandum of Agreement between the BIA and the Riverton Valley Irrigation District. Hence, this notice of rate adjustments reflects a 2011 O&M rate of $16.00 per acre for the Riverton Valley Irrigation District. Did the BIA receive any comments on the proposed irrigation assessment rate adjustments? Written comments were received related to the proposed rate adjustments for the San Carlos Irrigation Project and the Wapato Irrigation Project. What issues were of concern to the commenters? Commenters raised concerns specific to the San Carlos Irrigation Project on the proposed rates about the following issues: (1) The methodology used for O&M rate setting; and (2) the appropriateness of specific O&M budget items relating to undelivered orders, environmental compliance, staffing levels and salary charges for the Irrigation System Operators, the reserve fund, and deferred maintenance at Coolidge Dam. Commenters raised concerns specific to the Wapato Irrigation Project on the proposed rates about the following issues: (1) The Yakama Nation’s concern that ‘‘it is impossible to comment on the substance of the proposed increases without being provided the basic cost and acreage information that go into the determination of the rate’’; and (2) the Nation’s objection that the underlying O&M charges are inconsistent with the Nation’s litigation position in the pending appeals. WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with NOTICES The following comments are specific to the San Carlos Irrigation Project Written comments relating to the proposed rate adjustment for the San Carlos Irrigation Project–Joint Works (Project) were received by letter dated December 28, 2010, from the San Carlos Irrigation and Drainage District (District). The District raised several issues in its letter. The BIA’s summary of the District’s issues and the BIA’s responses are provided below. VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:23 May 06, 2011 Jkt 223001 Comment: The BIA’s methodology for setting the 2012 O&M assessment rate was unreasonable. Response: The methodology used by the BIA to determine the 2012 O&M assessment rate was reasonable. Based on a review of historical income and expenditures, a budget of projected income and expenditures is developed approximately two years before the O&M assessments are collected and expenses are incurred. The BIA relies on financial reports generated by the Federal Finance System for reviewing past expenditures and projecting a future budget and expenditures. Procurement files and records maintained by the Project are also reviewed and considered. For example, with regard to development of the 2012 Project budget, the BIA reviewed: (1) The year-end reconciled income and expenditure information for 2009; (2) available income and expenditure information for 2010; (3) previous budget projections for 2011; and (4) other information relevant to potential future Project expenses, such as cost information for replacement of the Coolidge Dam cylinder gates. The BIA provided the District with draft budget and supporting information, held budget fact-finding meetings between November 2009 and April 2010, and received feedback from the District. In addition, in accordance with BIA policy, the BIA held meetings with Project water users (including the District) to discuss O&M rates and maintenance needs. Comment: A large sum of obligated funds are carried over from year-to-year as undelivered orders (UDOs). As a result, funds are collected twice to satisfy the same UDOs. Obligated funds should be de-obligated at the end of each fiscal year and made available to meet expenses in the following year. Response: The BIA’s management of UDOs complies with Federal procurement requirements and is otherwise reasonable. The BIA met with the District several times to explain the UDOs carried by the Project’s budget and how the UDOs are tracked and accounted for in the Federal Financial System. Specifically, the BIA explained this issue during year-end budget reconciliation presentations made to Project stakeholders for Fiscal Years 2008, 2009, and 2010. The Project’s UDOs relate mostly to contract work in progress for annual maintenance of Project wells and annual environmental compliance activities. These contracts are awarded and administered in accordance with Federal procurement processes. Future contracts for these activities will also be solicited and PO 00000 Frm 00076 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 awarded by the BIA in compliance with Federal procurement requirements. When funds obligated to a contract are not fully expended during the period of the contract, the BIA de-obligates the unexpended funds and the funds become available to satisfy other Project financial obligations. The BIA disagrees with the District’s assertion that this is an ‘‘unreasonable fiscal management practice.’’ The BIA manages the funds within the approved Federal Financial System and Federal procurement processes. The BIA’s management of the funds is transparent to Project water users, and the amount, purpose, and status of the funds are reported to Project water users on a regular basis. Comment: The BIA should not use two ISOs to change gates and stoplogs. One ISO can perform these tasks and the additional ISO is an unnecessary expense. Response: The BIA currently uses two Project ISOs to perform certain O&M tasks, rather than one, as an interim measure in response to the accidental deaths of two Project ISOs, one in 2006 and the other in 2010, when they fell into the Project’s Pima Lateral and drowned. During the summer of 2010, the BIA Safety Office visited the Project to conduct a Safety and Occupational Health Program Evaluation and develop a safety plan for the Project. The plan should be completed in 2011. Until the plan is completed and specific recommendations are issued, the BIA will continue to use two ISOs for certain O&M activities. The BIA will re-evaluate this practice and implement appropriate measures once the plan is complete. Comment: The salaries of Project ISOs are high considering their work assignments. The Joint Control Board assumed many of the duties previously held by Project ISOs. The pay for these positions should be reduced. Response: The current Project ISOs are paid at current levels because they are on temporary detail from higherpaid positions. The BIA detailed two Power Division employees to the Irrigation Division to address the Project ISO issue noted in the previous response. These employees are heavy equipment operators and are paid at the prevailing wage scale for those positions while on detail to the Irrigation Division. The BIA detailed these employees to the Irrigation Division on a temporary basis, rather than immediately hiring new ISOs, because Project staff are in the midst of working with the BIA’s Human Resources Office to reorganize the Irrigation Division and establish ISO positions at the GS 04/05 level. The BIA initiated this reorganization at the request of the E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 89 / Monday, May 9, 2011 / Notices District and other Project water users. Once the reorganization is approved and the positions recruited and filled, the Project’s Irrigation Division staff budget will change accordingly. The BIA anticipated this change in the proposed FY 2013 O&M budget shared with Project water users. This reorganization initiative follows changes already made by the Project’s Irrigation Division during calendar year 2009 in response to the Joint Control Board’s assumption of maintenance duties on the Joint Works facilities. The Irrigation Division’s organization chart no longer includes heavy equipment operators because the maintenance functions of these positions were assumed by the Joint Control Board. The BIA will adjust staffing levels further once the Project’s water delivery facilities are fully automated. When this occurs, the BIA will re-evaluate the duties of the ISOs and adjust ISO wage levels so that salaries are commensurate with the skills, knowledge, and abilities required for delivering water using automated facilities. Comment: The Project’s contract for environmental and archaeological services should be terminated and these services should be procured competitively in the future. Entities applying for encroachment permits should be charged fees that will cover cost of necessary environmental and archaeological evaluations and permit processing. Response: The BIA did not extend the environmental and archaeological services contract non-competitively. The BIA extended the performance deadline for the contract, but the scope of work has remained the same. The BIA is taking several steps to reduce costs associated with performing environmental compliance activities. In some instances, the BIA develops its own environmental compliance work product in furtherance of O&M responsibilities (e.g., the San Carlos Reservoir litigation initiated by the San Carlos Apache Tribe). The BIA also uses environmental documents produced by other agencies where possible. To further reduce costs, the BIA is discussing with Project water users other options for conducting environmental compliance activities. The options include hiring an environmental specialist for the Project, charging fees to proponents of activities that require Federal environmental compliance, continuing to solicit contracts for this service, or some combination of these options. Environmental compliance activities associated with the Project’s O&M responsibilities are funded through VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:23 May 06, 2011 Jkt 223001 O&M assessments and collections from the District and from Federal appropriations on behalf of the Indian Works. The BIA is legally obligated to perform these compliance activities and they benefit Project users by ensuring that the environmental effects of Project activities are understood. The BIA is evaluating whether a fee schedule is appropriate for funding environmental compliance required for certain activities. Until this evaluation is complete, the BIA will continue to fund Federal environmental compliance activities from the Project O&M revenues as authorized by Congress. Comment: The emergency reserve fund should be reduced. Response: The Project’s emergency reserve fund is within the range specified in the Emergency Reserve Fund Determination Guidelines in the August 2008 BIA National Irrigation Handbook. The BIA reduced the reserve fund from $800,000 to $400,000 following the transfer of certain maintenance responsibilities to the Joint Control Board. The BIA continues to be responsible for the maintenance and management of Project wells and Coolidge Dam. Replacement of a single well is estimated to cost between $250,000 and $300,000. The BIA believes that the reserve fund should be maintained as proposed and consistent with the guidelines so that it can cover the cost of replacing a single well and other miscellaneous contingencies. Comment: The amount budgeted for replacement of the broken Coolidge Dam cylinder gates should be reduced. A single bulkhead gate would be sufficient and less expensive and should be used. The current cost estimate for the replacement of the gates exceeds the initial cost estimate and the BIA has not explained the reason for the increased cost. Response: Replacing the cylinder gates at Coolidge Dam with a single bulkhead gate is not appropriate. Also, the initial cost estimate referenced by the District is out-of-date and was a preliminary estimate. Recent cost estimates developed by the Bureau of Reclamation to replace both cylinder gates with automated bulkhead gates are more accurate. Replacing the inoperable gates with automated gates provides the greatest security to Project water users. The BIA provided information on this matter to Project water users. Additionally, in response to concerns expressed by the District at the last two water user meetings, the BIA proposed to schedule technical work group meetings this summer with the interested water users to re-review all available technical and cost information PO 00000 Frm 00077 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 26761 relating to the cylinder gates, and to refine the planning schedule for replacement of the cylinder gates. Using a single bulkhead gate to close both cylinder gates is inadvisable for several reasons: (1) The bulkhead gate may not fit in both gate towers because the towers likely do not have the same dimensions; (2) a crane capable of lifting the bulkhead gate may not be available locally—in an emergency situation significant damage could occur to Coolidge Dam while waiting for a suitable crane to be procured; (3) the single bulkhead gate could close only one conduit at a time; and (4) the road crossing the crest of the dam would need to be closed when the bulkhead gate is removed or installed. Comment: The employment of additional ISOs and replacement of Coolidge Dam cylinder gates are deviations from the ‘‘approved budget.’’ These deviations should not be made without documentation and consultation with the District. Response: The budget shared by the BIA during the Fact Finding process is not binding on the BIA. The BIA must update its O&M budget regularly to reflect actual expenditures and unplanned contingencies. The O&M budget presented during the Fact Finding process is the BIA’s best estimate of what it will cost to operate the Project. The budget cannot be expected to remain unchanged because it is prepared two years in advance of the fiscal year in which the Project performs the actual O&M work. The BIA provides the District with an update on the Project’s budget at nearly every monthly District Board meeting, at regularly scheduled water user meetings, and upon specific request from the District. The BIA provided the District adequate information regarding the O&M activities to which the District objects. The BIA provided the District and other stakeholders with detailed technical information and cost estimates for the cylinder gate replacement operation in 2006, and the BIA has continued to discuss this matter with stakeholders. More recently, in February 2011, the BIA hosted a site visit at Coolidge Dam at the request of water users to discuss the cylinder gate issue. The BIA’s Regional Safety of Dams Officer answered questions posed by the water users during this site visit. Also, the BIA has discussed the ISO interim measure and associated budget implications with water users continually since 2006. The BIA understands that the District disagrees with the interim measure undertaken by the Project to address this issue. The E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 26762 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 89 / Monday, May 9, 2011 / Notices BIA believes it has provided the District sufficient information and documentation regarding these activities. The Yakama Nation (Nation) raised the following comments. The BIA’s response is provided immediately after each comment statement. The following comments are specific to the Wapato Irrigation Project: Comment: The Nation is concerned that ‘‘it is impossible to comment on the substance of the proposed increases without being provided the basic cost and acreage information that go into the determination of the rate.’’ Response: Following BIA policy, the Wapato Irrigation Project conducted two water user meetings for the 2010 irrigation season. Representatives attending the meetings included the Nation and non-Indian water users. The purpose of these meetings is to provide opportunity for attendees to ask the BIA questions as well as to discuss maintenance plans for the upcoming year, among other topics. In accordance with 25 CFR Part 171.500, Operation and Maintenance, the Wapato Irrigation Project calculates the annual operation and maintenance assessment rate by estimating the annual operation, maintenance and rehabilitation costs and then dividing by the total assessable acres within the Project. Comment: The Nation objects that the underlying O&M charges are inconsistent with the Nation’s litigation position in the pending appeals. Response: The Nation, which is served by the Wapato Irrigation Project, has an administrative appeal regarding the BIA’s charging irrigation O&M on trust lands. As a general matter, the BIA’s position is that we have statutory authority to establish the rates provided for under this notice. Regarding this particular issue, it raises concerns currently on appeal and does not specifically target the rate change, so it will not be discussed further in this notice. Where can I get information on the regulatory and legal citations in this notice? Does this notice affect me? Who can I contact for further information? This notice affects you if you own or lease land within the assessable acreage of one of our irrigation projects, or if you have a carriage agreement with one of our irrigation projects. You can contact the appropriate office(s) stated in the tables for the irrigation project that serves you, or you can use the Internet site for the Government Printing Office at www.gpo.gov. What authorizes you to issue this notice? Our authority to issue this notice is vested in the Secretary of the Interior by 5 U.S.C. 301 and the Act of August 14, 1914 (38 Stat. 583; 25 U.S.C. 385). The Secretary has in turn delegated this authority to the Assistant Secretary— Indian Affairs under Part 209, Chapter 8.1A, of the Department of the Interior’s Departmental Manual. The following tables are the regional and project/agency contacts for our irrigation projects and facilities: Northwest Region Contacts Stanley Speaks, Regional Director Bureau of Indian Affairs, Northwest Regional Office, 911 NE. 11th Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97232– 4169, Telephone: (503) 231–6702 Project Name Project/Agency Contacts Fort Hall Irrigation Project Dean Fox, Acting Superintendent Fort Hall Agency P.O. Box 220 Fort Hall, ID 83203–0220 Telephone: (208) 238–1992 Wapato Irrigation Project Edwin Lewis, Project Administrator Wapato Irrigation Project P.O. Box 220 Wapato, WA 98951–0220 Telephone: (509) 877–3155 Rocky Mountain Region Contacts Ed Parisian, Regional Director, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Rocky Mountain Regional Office, 316 North 26th Street, Billings, Montana 59101, Telephone: (406) 247–7943 Project Name Agency/Project Contacts WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with NOTICES Blackfeet Irrigation Project Stephen Pollock, Superintendent Vacant, Irrigation Project Manager Box 880 Browning, MT 59417 Telephones: (406) 338–7544, Superintendent (406) 338–7519, Irrigation Project Manager Crow Irrigation Project Vianna Stewart, Superintendent Karl Helvik, Acting Irrigation Project Engineer P.O. Box 69 Crow Agency, MT 59022 Telephones: (406) 638–2672, Superintendent (406) 638–2863, Irrigation Project Manager Fort Belknap Cliff Hall, Superintendent VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:23 May 06, 2011 Jkt 223001 PO 00000 Frm 00078 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 89 / Monday, May 9, 2011 / Notices Irrigation Project Vacant, Irrigation Project Manager (Project O&M contracted by the Tribes) R.R.1, Box 980 Harlem, MT 59526 Telephones: (406) 353–2901, Superintendent (406) 353–2905, Irrigation Project Manager Fort Peck Irrigation Project Florence White Eagle, Superintendent, PH: (406) 768–5312 P.O. Box 637 Poplar, MT 59255; Huber Wright, Acting Irrigation Manager, PH: (406) 653–1752 602 6th Avenue North Wolf Point, MT 59201 Wind River Irrigation Project Ed Lone Fight, Superintendent Ray Nation, Acting Irrigation Project Manager P.O. Box 158 Fort Washakie, WY 82514 Telephones: (307) 332–7810, Superintendent (307) 332–2596, Irrigation Project Manager Southwest Region Contacts William T. Walker, Regional Director, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Southwest Regional Office, 1001 Indian School Road, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87104, Telephone: (505) 563–3100 Project Name Project/Agency Contacts Pine River Irrigation Project John Waconda, Superintendent Reginald Howe, Supervisory Irrigation Systems Operator P.O. Box 315 Ignacio, CO 81137–0315 Telephones: (970) 563–4511, Superintendent (970) 563–9484, Supervisory Irrigation Systems Operator Western Region Contacts Bryan Bowker, Regional Director, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Western Regional Office, 2600 N, Central Avenue, 4th Floor Mailroom Phoenix, Arizona 85004, Telephone: (602) 379–6600 Project Name Project/Agency Contacts Janice Staudte, Superintendent Ted Henry, Irrigation Project Manager 12124 1st Avenue Parker, AZ 85344 Telephone: (928) 669–7111 Duck Valley Irrigation Project Joseph McDade, Superintendent 1555 Shoshone Circle Elko, NV 89801 Telephone: (775) 738–5165 Fort Yuma Irrigation Project Irene Herder, Superintendent 256 South Second Avenue, Suite D Yuma, AZ 85364–2258 Telephone: (928) 782–1202 San Carlos Irrigation Project Joint Works WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with NOTICES Colorado River Irrigation Project Ferris Begay, Acting Project Manager Clarence Begay, Irrigation Manager P.O. Box 250 Coolidge, AZ 85228 Telephone: (520) 723–6215 San Carlos Irrigation Project Indian Works Cecilia Martinez, Superintendent Joe Revak, Supervisory General Engineer Pima Agency, Land Operations P.O. Box 8 Sacaton, AZ 85247 Telephone: (520) 562–3326 Telephone: (520) 562–3372 Uintah Daniel Picard, Superintendent VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:23 May 06, 2011 Jkt 223001 PO 00000 Frm 00079 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 26763 26764 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 89 / Monday, May 9, 2011 / Notices Irrigation Project Dale Thomas, Irrigation Manager P.O. Box 130 Fort Duchesne, UT 84026 Telephone: (435) 722–4300 Telephone: (435) 722–4341 Walker River Irrigation Project Athena Brown, Superintendent 311 E. Washington Street Carson City, NV 89701 Telephone: (775) 887–3500 What irrigation assessments or charges are adjusted by this notice? The rate table below contains the current rates for all irrigation projects where we recover costs of administering, operating, maintaining, and rehabilitating them. The table also contains the final rates for the 2011 season and subsequent years where applicable. An asterisk immediately following the name of the project notes where the 2011 rates are different from the 2010 rates. Northwest Region Rate Table Project name Rate category Fort Hall Irrigation Project * ................................................ Basic per acre ................................................. $40.50 $42.00 Minimum Charge per tract .............................. $30.00 $31.50 Basic per acre ................................................. $21.00 $22.50 Minimum Charge per tract .............................. $30.00 $31.50 Basic per acre ................................................. $41.50 $43.00 Pressure per acre ........................................... $58.00 $59.50 Minimum Charge per tract .............................. $30.00 $31.50 Minimum Charge for per bill ........................... $15.00 $17.00 Basic per acre ................................................. $15.00 $17.00 Minimum Charge per bill ................................ $15.00 $17.00 Basic per acre ................................................. $15.00 $17.00 Minimum Charge for per bill ........................... ‘‘A’’ Basic per acre .......................................... $58.00 $58.00 $63.00 $63.00 ‘‘B’’ Basic per acre .......................................... $68.00 $70.00 Minimum Charge per bill ................................ $63.00 $67.00 Basic per acre ................................................. $63.00 $67.00 Minimum Charge ............................................ $70.00 $72.00 Basic per acre ................................................. $70.00 $72.00 Fort Hall Irrigation Project—Minor Units * .......................... Fort Hall Irrigation Project—Michaud * ............................... Wapato Irrigation Project—Toppenish/Simcoe Units * ....... Wapato Irrigation Project—Ahtanum Units * ...................... Wapato Irrigation Project .................................................... Wapato/Satus Unit * ........................................................... Wapato Irrigation Project—Additional Works * ................... Wapato Irrigation Project Water Rental * ........................... Final 2010 rate Final 2011 rate Rocky Mountain Region Rate Table Rate category Blackfeet Irrigation Project ................................................. Basic-per acre ................................................. $19.00 $19.00 Crow Irrigation Project—Willow Creek O&M (includes Agency, Lodge Grass #1, Lodge Grass #2, Reno, Upper Little Horn, and Forty Mile Units). WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with NOTICES Project name Basic-per acre ................................................. $22.80 $22.80 Crow Irrigation Project—All Others (includes Bighorn, Soap Creek, and Pryor Units). Basic-per acre ................................................. $22.50 $22.50 Crow Irrigation Two Leggins Drainage District .................. Basic-per acre ................................................. $2.00 $2.00 Fort Belknap Irrigation Project ........................................... Basic-per acre ................................................. $14.75 $14.75 Fort Peck Irrigation Project ................................................ Basic-per acre ................................................. $24.70 $24.70 VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:23 May 06, 2011 Jkt 223001 PO 00000 Frm 00080 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM Final 2010 rate 09MYN1 Final 2011 rate 26765 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 89 / Monday, May 9, 2011 / Notices Wind River Irrigation Project .............................................. Basic-per acre ................................................. $20.00 $20.00 Wind River Irrigation Project—LeClair District * (see Noten #1). Basic-per acre ................................................. $26.00 $21.00 Wind River Irrigation Project—CrowHeart Unit .................. Basic-per acre ................................................. $14.00 $14.00 Wind River Irrigation Project—Riverton Valley Irrigation District. Basic-per acre ................................................. ............................ $16.00 Southwest Region Rate Table Project name Rate category Final 2010 rate Final 2011 rate Pine River Irrigation Project ............................................... Minimum Charge per tract .............................. $50.00 $50.00 Basic-per acre ................................................. $15.00 $15.00 Western Region Rate Table Project name Colorado River Irrigation Project *. Rate category Final 2010 rate Final 2011 rate Proposed 2012 rate Basic per acre up to 5.75 acre-feet .... $52.50 $54.00 Excess Water per acre-foot over 5.75 acre-feet. $17.00 $17.00 Duck Valley Irrigation Project ... Basic per acre ..................................... $5.30 $5.30 Fort Yuma Irrigation Project ..... (See Note #2) ........................... Basic per acre up to 5.0 acre-feet ...... $86.00 $86.00 Excess Water per acre-foot over 5.0 acre-feet. $14.00 $14.00 Basic per acre up to 5.0 acre-feet (Ranch 5). $86.00 $86.00 San Carlos Irrigation Project (Joint Works) *. (See Note #3) ........................... Basic per acre ..................................... $21.00 $25.00 $30.00 San Carlos Irrigation Project (Indian Works). (See Note #4) ........................... Basic per acre ..................................... $57.00 $68.00 To be determined Uintah Irrigation Project ........... Basic per acre ..................................... $15.00 $15.00 Minimum Bill ........................................ $25.00 $25.00 Indian per acre .................................... $19.00 $22.00 non-Indian per acre ............................. $19.00 $22.00 WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with NOTICES Walker River Irrigation Project * To be determined. * Notes irrigation projects where rates have been adjusted. Note #1—Upon further budget review and subsequent meetings with the water users, BIA revised the O&M rate to $26.00 per acre for FY 2010 versus the $27.00 per acre that was published in the Federal Register on May 26, 2010 (Vol. 75, No. 101, page 29578). Note #2—The O&M rate for the Fort Yuma Irrigation Project has two components. The first component is the O&M rate established by the Bureau of Reclamation (BOR), the owner and operator of the Project. The 2011 BOR rate remains unchanged at $79.00/acre. The second component is for the O&M rate established by BIA to cover administrative costs including billing and collections for the Project. The 2011 BIA rate remains unchanged at $7.00/acre. The rates shown include the 2011 Reclamation rate and the 2011 BIA rate. Note #3—This notice establishes the final rate for the SCIP–Joint Works for FY 2012. The proposed rate for FY 2012 was published in the Federal Register on November 1, 2011 (Vol. 75, No. 210, page 67095). The 2011 rate was established by final notice in the Federal Register on August 11, 2009 (Vol. 74 No. 153, page 40227). Note #4—The 2011 O&M rate for the San Carlos Irrigation Project—Indian Works has three components. The first component is the O&M rate established by the San Carlos Irrigation Project—Indian Works, the owner and operator of the Project; this rate is proposed to be $36.00 per acre. The second component is for the O&M rate established by the San Carlos Irrigation Project—Joint Works and is determined to be $25.00 per acre. The third component is the O&M rate established by the San Carlos Irrigation Project Joint Control Board and is proposed to be $7 per acre. VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:23 May 06, 2011 Jkt 223001 PO 00000 Frm 00081 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 26766 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 89 / Monday, May 9, 2011 / Notices the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). Consultation and Coordination With Tribal Governments (Executive Order 13175) To fulfill its consultation responsibility to Tribes and Tribal organizations, the BIA communicates, coordinates, and consults on a continuing basis with these entities on issues related to water delivery, water availability, and costs of administration, operation, maintenance, and rehabilitation of projects that concern them. This is accomplished at the individual irrigation project by Project, Agency, and Regional representatives, as appropriate, in accordance with local protocol and procedures. This notice is one component of our overall coordination and consultation process to provide notice to these entities when we adjust irrigation assessment rates. Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use (Executive Order 13211) Takings (Executive Order 12630) The Department has determined that these rate adjustments do not have significant ‘‘takings’’ implications. The rate adjustments do not deprive the public, state, or local governments of rights or property. Federalism (Executive Order 13132) The Department has determined that these rate adjustments do not have significant Federalism effects because they will not affect the States, the relationship between the national government and the States, or the distribution of power and responsibilities among various levels of government. Civil Justice Reform (Executive Order 12988) The rate adjustments will have no adverse effects on energy supply, distribution, or use (including a shortfall in supply, price increases, and increase use of foreign supplies) as this rate adjustment is implemented. This is a notice for rate adjustments at BIAowned and operated irrigation projects, except for the Fort Yuma Irrigation Project. The Fort Yuma Irrigation Project is owned and operated by the Bureau of Reclamation with a portion serving the Fort Yuma Reservation. Regulatory Planning and Review (Executive Order 12866) These rate adjustments are not a significant regulatory action and do not need to be reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 12866. In issuing this rule, the Department has taken the necessary steps to eliminate drafting errors and ambiguity, minimize potential litigation, and provide a clear legal standard for affected conduct, as required by section 3 of Executive Order 12988. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 These rate adjustments do not affect the collections of information which have been approved by the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The OMB Control Number is 1076–0141 and expires December 31, 2012. National Environmental Policy Act These rate adjustments are not a rule for the purposes of the Regulatory Flexibility Act because they establish ‘‘a rule of particular applicability relating to rates.’’ 5 U.S.C. 601(2). The Department has determined that these rate adjustments do not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment and that no detailed statement is required under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321–4370(d)). Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 Data Quality Act WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with NOTICES Regulatory Flexibility Act These rate adjustments do not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or Tribal governments in the aggregate, or on the private sector, of more than $130 million per year. The rule does not have a significant or unique effect on State, local, or Tribal governments or the private sector. Therefore, the Department of the Interior (Department) is not required to prepare a statement containing the information required by VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:23 May 06, 2011 Jkt 223001 In developing this notice, we did not conduct or use a study, experiment, or survey requiring peer review under the Information Quality Act (Pub. L. 106– 554). Dated: April 27, 2011. Jodi Gillette, Deputy Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs. [FR Doc. 2011–11165 Filed 5–6–11; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–W7–P PO 00000 Frm 00082 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [LLNM940000 L1420000.BJ0000] Notice of Filing of Plats of Survey, New Mexico Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of filing of Plats of Survey. AGENCY: The plats of survey described below are scheduled to be officially filed in the New Mexico State Office, Bureau of Land Management, Santa Fe, New Mexico, thirty (30) calendar days from the date of this publication. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: New Mexico Principal Meridian, New Mexico (NM) The plat, representing the dependent resurvey and survey, in Township 22 South, Range 2 East, of the New Mexico Principal Meridian, accepted March 15, 2011, for Group 1116 NM. The plat, representing the dependent resurvey and survey, in Township 4 South, Range 1 West, of the New Mexico Principal Meridian, accepted March 16, 2011, for Group 1108 NM. The plat, in five sheets, representing the dependent resurvey and survey, in Township 14 North, Range 20 West, of the New Mexico Principal Meridian, accepted April 19, 2011, for Group 1099 NM. The supplemental plat, for Township 29 North, Range 13 East, of the New Mexico Principal Meridian accepted March 23, 2011. Indian Meridian, Oklahoma (OK) The plat, representing the dependent resurvey and survey in Township 22 North, Range 21 East, of the Indian Meridian, accepted March 22, 2011, for Group 193 OK. Sixth Principal Meridian, Kansas (KS) The plat, representing the dependent resurvey and survey in Township 4 South, Range 15 East, of the Sixth Principal Meridian, accepted April 7, 2011, for Group 35 KS. The plat, representing the dependent resurvey and survey in Township 7 South, Range 14 East, of the Sixth Principal Meridian, accepted March 30, 2011, for Group 34 KS. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: These plats will be available for inspection in the New Mexico State Office, Bureau of Land Management, 301 Dinosaur Trail, Santa Fe, New Mexico. Copies may be obtained from this office upon payment. Contact E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 89 (Monday, May 9, 2011)]
[Notices]
[Pages 26759-26766]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-11165]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Indian Affairs


Rate Adjustments for Indian Irrigation Projects

AGENCY: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Rate Adjustments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) owns, or has an interest 
in, irrigation projects located on or associated with various Indian 
reservations throughout the United States. We are required to establish 
irrigation assessment rates to recover the costs to administer, 
operate, maintain, and rehabilitate these projects. We are notifying 
you that we have adjusted the irrigation assessment rates at several of 
our irrigation projects and facilities to reflect current costs of 
administration, operation, maintenance, and rehabilitation.

DATES: Effective Date: The irrigation assessment rates shown in the 
tables as final are effective as of January 3, 2011.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For details about a particular BIA 
irrigation project or facility, please use the tables in the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section to contact the regional or local 
office where the project or facility is located.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A Notice of Proposed Rate Adjustment was 
published in the Federal Register on November 1, 2010 (75 FR 67095) to 
propose adjustments to the irrigation assessment rates at several BIA 
irrigation projects. The public and interested parties were provided an 
opportunity to submit written comments during the 60-day period that 
ended January 3, 2011.

[[Page 26760]]

Did the BIA defer or change any proposed rate increases?

    Yes. The 2011 Operation and Maintenance (O&M) rate for the Riverton 
Valley Irrigation District of the Wind River Irrigation Project was 
proposed in the Federal Register at $17.00 per acre. After further 
review, BIA discovered that the 2011 O&M rate for Riverton Valley 
Irrigation District should have been at $16.00 per acre pursuant to the 
Memorandum of Agreement between the BIA and the Riverton Valley 
Irrigation District. Hence, this notice of rate adjustments reflects a 
2011 O&M rate of $16.00 per acre for the Riverton Valley Irrigation 
District.

Did the BIA receive any comments on the proposed irrigation assessment 
rate adjustments?

    Written comments were received related to the proposed rate 
adjustments for the San Carlos Irrigation Project and the Wapato 
Irrigation Project.

What issues were of concern to the commenters?

    Commenters raised concerns specific to the San Carlos Irrigation 
Project on the proposed rates about the following issues: (1) The 
methodology used for O&M rate setting; and (2) the appropriateness of 
specific O&M budget items relating to undelivered orders, environmental 
compliance, staffing levels and salary charges for the Irrigation 
System Operators, the reserve fund, and deferred maintenance at 
Coolidge Dam.
    Commenters raised concerns specific to the Wapato Irrigation 
Project on the proposed rates about the following issues: (1) The 
Yakama Nation's concern that ``it is impossible to comment on the 
substance of the proposed increases without being provided the basic 
cost and acreage information that go into the determination of the 
rate''; and (2) the Nation's objection that the underlying O&M charges 
are inconsistent with the Nation's litigation position in the pending 
appeals.

The following comments are specific to the San Carlos Irrigation 
Project

    Written comments relating to the proposed rate adjustment for the 
San Carlos Irrigation Project-Joint Works (Project) were received by 
letter dated December 28, 2010, from the San Carlos Irrigation and 
Drainage District (District).
    The District raised several issues in its letter. The BIA's summary 
of the District's issues and the BIA's responses are provided below.
    Comment: The BIA's methodology for setting the 2012 O&M assessment 
rate was unreasonable.
    Response: The methodology used by the BIA to determine the 2012 O&M 
assessment rate was reasonable. Based on a review of historical income 
and expenditures, a budget of projected income and expenditures is 
developed approximately two years before the O&M assessments are 
collected and expenses are incurred. The BIA relies on financial 
reports generated by the Federal Finance System for reviewing past 
expenditures and projecting a future budget and expenditures. 
Procurement files and records maintained by the Project are also 
reviewed and considered. For example, with regard to development of the 
2012 Project budget, the BIA reviewed: (1) The year-end reconciled 
income and expenditure information for 2009; (2) available income and 
expenditure information for 2010; (3) previous budget projections for 
2011; and (4) other information relevant to potential future Project 
expenses, such as cost information for replacement of the Coolidge Dam 
cylinder gates.
    The BIA provided the District with draft budget and supporting 
information, held budget fact-finding meetings between November 2009 
and April 2010, and received feedback from the District. In addition, 
in accordance with BIA policy, the BIA held meetings with Project water 
users (including the District) to discuss O&M rates and maintenance 
needs.
    Comment: A large sum of obligated funds are carried over from year-
to-year as undelivered orders (UDOs). As a result, funds are collected 
twice to satisfy the same UDOs. Obligated funds should be de-obligated 
at the end of each fiscal year and made available to meet expenses in 
the following year.
    Response: The BIA's management of UDOs complies with Federal 
procurement requirements and is otherwise reasonable. The BIA met with 
the District several times to explain the UDOs carried by the Project's 
budget and how the UDOs are tracked and accounted for in the Federal 
Financial System. Specifically, the BIA explained this issue during 
year-end budget reconciliation presentations made to Project 
stakeholders for Fiscal Years 2008, 2009, and 2010. The Project's UDOs 
relate mostly to contract work in progress for annual maintenance of 
Project wells and annual environmental compliance activities. These 
contracts are awarded and administered in accordance with Federal 
procurement processes. Future contracts for these activities will also 
be solicited and awarded by the BIA in compliance with Federal 
procurement requirements. When funds obligated to a contract are not 
fully expended during the period of the contract, the BIA de-obligates 
the unexpended funds and the funds become available to satisfy other 
Project financial obligations. The BIA disagrees with the District's 
assertion that this is an ``unreasonable fiscal management practice.'' 
The BIA manages the funds within the approved Federal Financial System 
and Federal procurement processes. The BIA's management of the funds is 
transparent to Project water users, and the amount, purpose, and status 
of the funds are reported to Project water users on a regular basis.
    Comment: The BIA should not use two ISOs to change gates and 
stoplogs. One ISO can perform these tasks and the additional ISO is an 
unnecessary expense.
    Response: The BIA currently uses two Project ISOs to perform 
certain O&M tasks, rather than one, as an interim measure in response 
to the accidental deaths of two Project ISOs, one in 2006 and the other 
in 2010, when they fell into the Project's Pima Lateral and drowned. 
During the summer of 2010, the BIA Safety Office visited the Project to 
conduct a Safety and Occupational Health Program Evaluation and develop 
a safety plan for the Project. The plan should be completed in 2011. 
Until the plan is completed and specific recommendations are issued, 
the BIA will continue to use two ISOs for certain O&M activities. The 
BIA will re-evaluate this practice and implement appropriate measures 
once the plan is complete.
    Comment: The salaries of Project ISOs are high considering their 
work assignments. The Joint Control Board assumed many of the duties 
previously held by Project ISOs. The pay for these positions should be 
reduced.
    Response: The current Project ISOs are paid at current levels 
because they are on temporary detail from higher-paid positions. The 
BIA detailed two Power Division employees to the Irrigation Division to 
address the Project ISO issue noted in the previous response. These 
employees are heavy equipment operators and are paid at the prevailing 
wage scale for those positions while on detail to the Irrigation 
Division. The BIA detailed these employees to the Irrigation Division 
on a temporary basis, rather than immediately hiring new ISOs, because 
Project staff are in the midst of working with the BIA's Human 
Resources Office to reorganize the Irrigation Division and establish 
ISO positions at the GS 04/05 level. The BIA initiated this 
reorganization at the request of the

[[Page 26761]]

District and other Project water users. Once the reorganization is 
approved and the positions recruited and filled, the Project's 
Irrigation Division staff budget will change accordingly. The BIA 
anticipated this change in the proposed FY 2013 O&M budget shared with 
Project water users.
    This reorganization initiative follows changes already made by the 
Project's Irrigation Division during calendar year 2009 in response to 
the Joint Control Board's assumption of maintenance duties on the Joint 
Works facilities. The Irrigation Division's organization chart no 
longer includes heavy equipment operators because the maintenance 
functions of these positions were assumed by the Joint Control Board. 
The BIA will adjust staffing levels further once the Project's water 
delivery facilities are fully automated. When this occurs, the BIA will 
re-evaluate the duties of the ISOs and adjust ISO wage levels so that 
salaries are commensurate with the skills, knowledge, and abilities 
required for delivering water using automated facilities.
    Comment: The Project's contract for environmental and 
archaeological services should be terminated and these services should 
be procured competitively in the future. Entities applying for 
encroachment permits should be charged fees that will cover cost of 
necessary environmental and archaeological evaluations and permit 
processing.
    Response: The BIA did not extend the environmental and 
archaeological services contract non-competitively. The BIA extended 
the performance deadline for the contract, but the scope of work has 
remained the same. The BIA is taking several steps to reduce costs 
associated with performing environmental compliance activities.
    In some instances, the BIA develops its own environmental 
compliance work product in furtherance of O&M responsibilities (e.g., 
the San Carlos Reservoir litigation initiated by the San Carlos Apache 
Tribe). The BIA also uses environmental documents produced by other 
agencies where possible. To further reduce costs, the BIA is discussing 
with Project water users other options for conducting environmental 
compliance activities. The options include hiring an environmental 
specialist for the Project, charging fees to proponents of activities 
that require Federal environmental compliance, continuing to solicit 
contracts for this service, or some combination of these options.
    Environmental compliance activities associated with the Project's 
O&M responsibilities are funded through O&M assessments and collections 
from the District and from Federal appropriations on behalf of the 
Indian Works. The BIA is legally obligated to perform these compliance 
activities and they benefit Project users by ensuring that the 
environmental effects of Project activities are understood. The BIA is 
evaluating whether a fee schedule is appropriate for funding 
environmental compliance required for certain activities. Until this 
evaluation is complete, the BIA will continue to fund Federal 
environmental compliance activities from the Project O&M revenues as 
authorized by Congress.
    Comment: The emergency reserve fund should be reduced.
    Response: The Project's emergency reserve fund is within the range 
specified in the Emergency Reserve Fund Determination Guidelines in the 
August 2008 BIA National Irrigation Handbook. The BIA reduced the 
reserve fund from $800,000 to $400,000 following the transfer of 
certain maintenance responsibilities to the Joint Control Board. The 
BIA continues to be responsible for the maintenance and management of 
Project wells and Coolidge Dam. Replacement of a single well is 
estimated to cost between $250,000 and $300,000. The BIA believes that 
the reserve fund should be maintained as proposed and consistent with 
the guidelines so that it can cover the cost of replacing a single well 
and other miscellaneous contingencies.
    Comment: The amount budgeted for replacement of the broken Coolidge 
Dam cylinder gates should be reduced. A single bulkhead gate would be 
sufficient and less expensive and should be used. The current cost 
estimate for the replacement of the gates exceeds the initial cost 
estimate and the BIA has not explained the reason for the increased 
cost.
    Response: Replacing the cylinder gates at Coolidge Dam with a 
single bulkhead gate is not appropriate. Also, the initial cost 
estimate referenced by the District is out-of-date and was a 
preliminary estimate. Recent cost estimates developed by the Bureau of 
Reclamation to replace both cylinder gates with automated bulkhead 
gates are more accurate. Replacing the inoperable gates with automated 
gates provides the greatest security to Project water users. The BIA 
provided information on this matter to Project water users. 
Additionally, in response to concerns expressed by the District at the 
last two water user meetings, the BIA proposed to schedule technical 
work group meetings this summer with the interested water users to re-
review all available technical and cost information relating to the 
cylinder gates, and to refine the planning schedule for replacement of 
the cylinder gates.
    Using a single bulkhead gate to close both cylinder gates is 
inadvisable for several reasons: (1) The bulkhead gate may not fit in 
both gate towers because the towers likely do not have the same 
dimensions; (2) a crane capable of lifting the bulkhead gate may not be 
available locally--in an emergency situation significant damage could 
occur to Coolidge Dam while waiting for a suitable crane to be 
procured; (3) the single bulkhead gate could close only one conduit at 
a time; and (4) the road crossing the crest of the dam would need to be 
closed when the bulkhead gate is removed or installed.
    Comment: The employment of additional ISOs and replacement of 
Coolidge Dam cylinder gates are deviations from the ``approved 
budget.'' These deviations should not be made without documentation and 
consultation with the District.
    Response: The budget shared by the BIA during the Fact Finding 
process is not binding on the BIA. The BIA must update its O&M budget 
regularly to reflect actual expenditures and unplanned contingencies. 
The O&M budget presented during the Fact Finding process is the BIA's 
best estimate of what it will cost to operate the Project. The budget 
cannot be expected to remain unchanged because it is prepared two years 
in advance of the fiscal year in which the Project performs the actual 
O&M work. The BIA provides the District with an update on the Project's 
budget at nearly every monthly District Board meeting, at regularly 
scheduled water user meetings, and upon specific request from the 
District.
    The BIA provided the District adequate information regarding the 
O&M activities to which the District objects. The BIA provided the 
District and other stakeholders with detailed technical information and 
cost estimates for the cylinder gate replacement operation in 2006, and 
the BIA has continued to discuss this matter with stakeholders. More 
recently, in February 2011, the BIA hosted a site visit at Coolidge Dam 
at the request of water users to discuss the cylinder gate issue. The 
BIA's Regional Safety of Dams Officer answered questions posed by the 
water users during this site visit. Also, the BIA has discussed the ISO 
interim measure and associated budget implications with water users 
continually since 2006. The BIA understands that the District disagrees 
with the interim measure undertaken by the Project to address this 
issue. The

[[Page 26762]]

BIA believes it has provided the District sufficient information and 
documentation regarding these activities.
    The Yakama Nation (Nation) raised the following comments. The BIA's 
response is provided immediately after each comment statement.
    The following comments are specific to the Wapato Irrigation 
Project:
    Comment: The Nation is concerned that ``it is impossible to comment 
on the substance of the proposed increases without being provided the 
basic cost and acreage information that go into the determination of 
the rate.''
    Response: Following BIA policy, the Wapato Irrigation Project 
conducted two water user meetings for the 2010 irrigation season. 
Representatives attending the meetings included the Nation and non-
Indian water users. The purpose of these meetings is to provide 
opportunity for attendees to ask the BIA questions as well as to 
discuss maintenance plans for the upcoming year, among other topics. In 
accordance with 25 CFR Part 171.500, Operation and Maintenance, the 
Wapato Irrigation Project calculates the annual operation and 
maintenance assessment rate by estimating the annual operation, 
maintenance and rehabilitation costs and then dividing by the total 
assessable acres within the Project.
    Comment: The Nation objects that the underlying O&M charges are 
inconsistent with the Nation's litigation position in the pending 
appeals.
    Response: The Nation, which is served by the Wapato Irrigation 
Project, has an administrative appeal regarding the BIA's charging 
irrigation O&M on trust lands. As a general matter, the BIA's position 
is that we have statutory authority to establish the rates provided for 
under this notice. Regarding this particular issue, it raises concerns 
currently on appeal and does not specifically target the rate change, 
so it will not be discussed further in this notice.

Does this notice affect me?

    This notice affects you if you own or lease land within the 
assessable acreage of one of our irrigation projects, or if you have a 
carriage agreement with one of our irrigation projects.

Where can I get information on the regulatory and legal citations in 
this notice?

    You can contact the appropriate office(s) stated in the tables for 
the irrigation project that serves you, or you can use the Internet 
site for the Government Printing Office at www.gpo.gov.

What authorizes you to issue this notice?

    Our authority to issue this notice is vested in the Secretary of 
the Interior by 5 U.S.C. 301 and the Act of August 14, 1914 (38 Stat. 
583; 25 U.S.C. 385). The Secretary has in turn delegated this authority 
to the Assistant Secretary--Indian Affairs under Part 209, Chapter 
8.1A, of the Department of the Interior's Departmental Manual.

Who can I contact for further information?

    The following tables are the regional and project/agency contacts 
for our irrigation projects and facilities:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Northwest Region Contacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Stanley Speaks, Regional Director Bureau
 of Indian Affairs, Northwest Regional
 Office, 911 NE. 11th Avenue, Portland,
 Oregon 97232-4169, Telephone: (503) 231-
 6702
------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Project Name                    Project/Agency Contacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Hall                                   Dean Fox, Acting
                                             Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          Fort Hall Agency
                                            P.O. Box 220
                                            Fort Hall, ID 83203-0220
                                            Telephone: (208) 238-1992
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Wapato                                      Edwin Lewis, Project
                                             Administrator
Irrigation Project                          Wapato Irrigation Project
                                            P.O. Box 220
                                            Wapato, WA 98951-0220
                                            Telephone: (509) 877-3155
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                     Rocky Mountain Region Contacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ed Parisian, Regional Director, Bureau of
 Indian Affairs, Rocky Mountain Regional
 Office, 316 North 26th Street, Billings,
 Montana 59101, Telephone: (406) 247-7943
------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Project Name                    Agency/Project Contacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Blackfeet                                   Stephen Pollock,
                                             Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          Vacant, Irrigation Project
                                             Manager
                                            Box 880
                                            Browning, MT 59417
                                            Telephones: (406) 338-7544,
                                             Superintendent
                                            (406) 338-7519, Irrigation
                                             Project Manager
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Crow                                        Vianna Stewart,
                                             Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          Karl Helvik, Acting
                                             Irrigation Project Engineer
                                            P.O. Box 69
                                            Crow Agency, MT 59022
                                            Telephones: (406) 638-2672,
                                             Superintendent
                                            (406) 638-2863, Irrigation
                                             Project Manager
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Belknap                                Cliff Hall, Superintendent

[[Page 26763]]

 
Irrigation Project                          Vacant, Irrigation Project
                                             Manager
                                            (Project O&M contracted by
                                             the Tribes)
                                            R.R.1, Box 980
                                            Harlem, MT 59526
                                            Telephones: (406) 353-2901,
                                             Superintendent
                                            (406) 353-2905, Irrigation
                                             Project Manager
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Peck                                   Florence White Eagle,
                                             Superintendent,
Irrigation Project                          PH: (406) 768-5312
                                            P.O. Box 637
                                            Poplar, MT 59255;
                                            Huber Wright, Acting
                                             Irrigation Manager,
                                            PH: (406) 653-1752
                                            602 6th Avenue North
                                            Wolf Point, MT 59201
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Wind River                                  Ed Lone Fight,
                                             Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          Ray Nation, Acting
                                             Irrigation Project Manager
                                            P.O. Box 158
                                            Fort Washakie, WY 82514
                                            Telephones: (307) 332-7810,
                                             Superintendent
                                            (307) 332-2596, Irrigation
                                             Project Manager
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Southwest Region Contacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
William T. Walker, Regional Director,
 Bureau of Indian Affairs, Southwest
 Regional Office, 1001 Indian School Road,
 Albuquerque, New Mexico 87104, Telephone:
 (505) 563-3100
------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Project Name                    Project/Agency Contacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pine River                                  John Waconda, Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          Reginald Howe, Supervisory
                                             Irrigation Systems Operator
                                            P.O. Box 315
                                            Ignacio, CO 81137-0315
                                            Telephones: (970) 563-4511,
                                             Superintendent
                                            (970) 563-9484, Supervisory
                                             Irrigation Systems Operator
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                         Western Region Contacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bryan Bowker, Regional Director, Bureau of
 Indian Affairs, Western Regional Office,
 2600 N, Central Avenue, 4th Floor
 Mailroom Phoenix, Arizona 85004,
 Telephone: (602) 379-6600
------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Project Name                    Project/Agency Contacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Colorado River                              Janice Staudte,
                                             Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          Ted Henry, Irrigation
                                             Project Manager
                                            12124 1st Avenue
                                            Parker, AZ 85344
                                            Telephone: (928) 669-7111
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Duck Valley                                 Joseph McDade,
                                             Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          1555 Shoshone Circle
                                            Elko, NV 89801
                                            Telephone: (775) 738-5165
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Yuma                                   Irene Herder, Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          256 South Second Avenue,
                                             Suite D
                                            Yuma, AZ 85364-2258
                                            Telephone: (928) 782-1202
------------------------------------------------------------------------
San Carlos                                  Ferris Begay, Acting Project
                                             Manager
Irrigation Project                          Clarence Begay, Irrigation
                                             Manager
Joint Works                                 P.O. Box 250
                                            Coolidge, AZ 85228
                                            Telephone: (520) 723-6215
------------------------------------------------------------------------
San Carlos                                  Cecilia Martinez,
                                             Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          Joe Revak, Supervisory
                                             General Engineer
Indian Works                                Pima Agency, Land Operations
                                            P.O. Box 8
                                            Sacaton, AZ 85247
                                            Telephone: (520) 562-3326
                                            Telephone: (520) 562-3372
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Uintah                                      Daniel Picard,
                                             Superintendent

[[Page 26764]]

 
Irrigation Project                          Dale Thomas, Irrigation
                                             Manager
                                            P.O. Box 130
                                            Fort Duchesne, UT 84026
                                            Telephone: (435) 722-4300
                                            Telephone: (435) 722-4341
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Walker River                                Athena Brown, Superintendent
Irrigation Project                          311 E. Washington Street
                                            Carson City, NV 89701
                                            Telephone: (775) 887-3500
------------------------------------------------------------------------

What irrigation assessments or charges are adjusted by this notice?

    The rate table below contains the current rates for all irrigation 
projects where we recover costs of administering, operating, 
maintaining, and rehabilitating them. The table also contains the final 
rates for the 2011 season and subsequent years where applicable. An 
asterisk immediately following the name of the project notes where the 
2011 rates are different from the 2010 rates.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           Northwest Region Rate Table
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                Project name                          Rate category            Final 2010 rate   Final 2011 rate
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Hall Irrigation Project *.............  Basic per acre.................            $40.50            $42.00
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Minimum Charge per tract.......            $30.00            $31.50
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Hall Irrigation Project--Minor Units *  Basic per acre.................            $21.00            $22.50
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Minimum Charge per tract.......            $30.00            $31.50
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Hall Irrigation Project--Michaud *....  Basic per acre.................            $41.50            $43.00
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Pressure per acre..............            $58.00            $59.50
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Minimum Charge per tract.......            $30.00            $31.50
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Wapato Irrigation Project--Toppenish/Simcoe  Minimum Charge for per bill....            $15.00            $17.00
 Units *.
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Basic per acre.................            $15.00            $17.00
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Wapato Irrigation Project--Ahtanum Units *.  Minimum Charge per bill........            $15.00            $17.00
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Basic per acre.................            $15.00            $17.00
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Wapato Irrigation Project..................  Minimum Charge for per bill....            $58.00            $63.00
Wapato/Satus Unit *........................   ``A'' Basic per acre..........            $58.00            $63.00
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                              ``B'' Basic per acre..........            $68.00            $70.00
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Wapato Irrigation Project--Additional Works  Minimum Charge per bill........            $63.00            $67.00
 *.
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Basic per acre.................            $63.00            $67.00
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Wapato Irrigation Project Water Rental *...  Minimum Charge.................            $70.00            $72.00
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Basic per acre.................            $70.00            $72.00
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                                        Rocky Mountain Region Rate Table
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                Project name                          Rate category            Final 2010 rate   Final 2011 rate
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Blackfeet Irrigation Project...............  Basic-per acre.................            $19.00            $19.00
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Crow Irrigation Project--Willow Creek O&M    Basic-per acre.................            $22.80            $22.80
 (includes Agency, Lodge Grass 1,
 Lodge Grass 2, Reno, Upper Little
 Horn, and Forty Mile Units).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Crow Irrigation Project--All Others          Basic-per acre.................            $22.50            $22.50
 (includes Bighorn, Soap Creek, and Pryor
 Units).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Crow Irrigation Two Leggins Drainage         Basic-per acre.................             $2.00             $2.00
 District.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Belknap Irrigation Project............  Basic-per acre.................            $14.75            $14.75
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fort Peck Irrigation Project...............  Basic-per acre.................            $24.70            $24.70
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[[Page 26765]]

 
Wind River Irrigation Project..............  Basic-per acre.................            $20.00            $20.00
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Wind River Irrigation Project--LeClair       Basic-per acre.................            $26.00            $21.00
 District * (see Noten 1).
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Wind River Irrigation Project--CrowHeart     Basic-per acre.................            $14.00            $14.00
 Unit.
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Wind River Irrigation Project--Riverton      Basic-per acre.................  ................            $16.00
 Valley Irrigation District.
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                                           Southwest Region Rate Table
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                Project name                          Rate category            Final 2010 rate   Final 2011 rate
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pine River Irrigation Project..............  Minimum Charge per tract.......            $50.00            $50.00
                                            --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Basic-per acre.................            $15.00            $15.00
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


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                                            Western Region Rate Table
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
          Project name                Rate category        Final 2010 rate   Final 2011 rate  Proposed 2012 rate
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Colorado River Irrigation        Basic per acre up to               $52.50            $54.00  To be determined.
 Project *.                       5.75 acre-feet.
                                -------------------------------------------
                                 Excess Water per acre-             $17.00            $17.00
                                  foot over 5.75 acre-
                                  feet.
                                -------------------------------------------
Duck Valley Irrigation Project.  Basic per acre.........             $5.30             $5.30
                                -------------------------------------------
Fort Yuma Irrigation Project...  Basic per acre up to               $86.00            $86.00
(See Note 2)..........   5.0 acre-feet.
                                -------------------------------------------
                                 Excess Water per acre-             $14.00            $14.00
                                  foot over 5.0 acre-
                                  feet.
                                -------------------------------------------
                                 Basic per acre up to               $86.00            $86.00
                                  5.0 acre-feet (Ranch
                                  5).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
San Carlos Irrigation Project    Basic per acre.........            $21.00            $25.00  $30.00
 (Joint Works) *.
(See Note 3)..........
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
San Carlos Irrigation Project    Basic per acre.........            $57.00            $68.00  To be determined
 (Indian Works).
(See Note 4)..........
                                -------------------------------------------
Uintah Irrigation Project......  Basic per acre.........            $15.00            $15.00
                                -------------------------------------------
                                 Minimum Bill...........            $25.00            $25.00
                                -------------------------------------------
Walker River Irrigation Project  Indian per acre........            $19.00            $22.00
 *.
                                -------------------------------------------
                                 non-Indian per acre....            $19.00            $22.00
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
* Notes irrigation projects where rates have been adjusted.
Note 1--Upon further budget review and subsequent meetings with the water users, BIA revised the O&M
  rate to $26.00 per acre for FY 2010 versus the $27.00 per acre that was published in the Federal Register on
  May 26, 2010 (Vol. 75, No. 101, page 29578).
Note 2--The O&M rate for the Fort Yuma Irrigation Project has two components. The first component is
  the O&M rate established by the Bureau of Reclamation (BOR), the owner and operator of the Project. The 2011
  BOR rate remains unchanged at $79.00/acre. The second component is for the O&M rate established by BIA to
  cover administrative costs including billing and collections for the Project. The 2011 BIA rate remains
  unchanged at $7.00/acre. The rates shown include the 2011 Reclamation rate and the 2011 BIA rate.
Note 3--This notice establishes the final rate for the SCIP-Joint Works for FY 2012. The proposed
  rate for FY 2012 was published in the Federal Register on November 1, 2011 (Vol. 75, No. 210, page 67095). The
  2011 rate was established by final notice in the Federal Register on August 11, 2009 (Vol. 74 No. 153, page
  40227).
Note 4--The 2011 O&M rate for the San Carlos Irrigation Project--Indian Works has three components.
  The first component is the O&M rate established by the San Carlos Irrigation Project--Indian Works, the owner
  and operator of the Project; this rate is proposed to be $36.00 per acre. The second component is for the O&M
  rate established by the San Carlos Irrigation Project--Joint Works and is determined to be $25.00 per acre.
  The third component is the O&M rate established by the San Carlos Irrigation Project Joint Control Board and
  is proposed to be $7 per acre.


[[Page 26766]]

Consultation and Coordination With Tribal Governments (Executive Order 
13175)

    To fulfill its consultation responsibility to Tribes and Tribal 
organizations, the BIA communicates, coordinates, and consults on a 
continuing basis with these entities on issues related to water 
delivery, water availability, and costs of administration, operation, 
maintenance, and rehabilitation of projects that concern them. This is 
accomplished at the individual irrigation project by Project, Agency, 
and Regional representatives, as appropriate, in accordance with local 
protocol and procedures. This notice is one component of our overall 
coordination and consultation process to provide notice to these 
entities when we adjust irrigation assessment rates.

Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, 
Distribution, or Use (Executive Order 13211)

    The rate adjustments will have no adverse effects on energy supply, 
distribution, or use (including a shortfall in supply, price increases, 
and increase use of foreign supplies) as this rate adjustment is 
implemented. This is a notice for rate adjustments at BIA-owned and 
operated irrigation projects, except for the Fort Yuma Irrigation 
Project. The Fort Yuma Irrigation Project is owned and operated by the 
Bureau of Reclamation with a portion serving the Fort Yuma Reservation.

Regulatory Planning and Review (Executive Order 12866)

    These rate adjustments are not a significant regulatory action and 
do not need to be reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget under 
Executive Order 12866.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    These rate adjustments are not a rule for the purposes of the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act because they establish ``a rule of 
particular applicability relating to rates.'' 5 U.S.C. 601(2).

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    These rate adjustments do not impose an unfunded mandate on State, 
local, or Tribal governments in the aggregate, or on the private 
sector, of more than $130 million per year. The rule does not have a 
significant or unique effect on State, local, or Tribal governments or 
the private sector. Therefore, the Department of the Interior 
(Department) is not required to prepare a statement containing the 
information required by the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1531 
et seq.).

Takings (Executive Order 12630)

    The Department has determined that these rate adjustments do not 
have significant ``takings'' implications. The rate adjustments do not 
deprive the public, state, or local governments of rights or property.

Federalism (Executive Order 13132)

    The Department has determined that these rate adjustments do not 
have significant Federalism effects because they will not affect the 
States, the relationship between the national government and the 
States, or the distribution of power and responsibilities among various 
levels of government.

Civil Justice Reform (Executive Order 12988)

    In issuing this rule, the Department has taken the necessary steps 
to eliminate drafting errors and ambiguity, minimize potential 
litigation, and provide a clear legal standard for affected conduct, as 
required by section 3 of Executive Order 12988.

Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    These rate adjustments do not affect the collections of information 
which have been approved by the Office of Information and Regulatory 
Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, under the Paperwork Reduction 
Act of 1995. The OMB Control Number is 1076-0141 and expires December 
31, 2012.

National Environmental Policy Act

    The Department has determined that these rate adjustments do not 
constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality 
of the human environment and that no detailed statement is required 
under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321-
4370(d)).

Data Quality Act

    In developing this notice, we did not conduct or use a study, 
experiment, or survey requiring peer review under the Information 
Quality Act (Pub. L. 106-554).

    Dated: April 27, 2011.
Jodi Gillette,
Deputy Assistant Secretary--Indian Affairs.
[FR Doc. 2011-11165 Filed 5-6-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-W7-P