The Wyoming Game And Fish Commission has been meeting in Lander this week to discuss a number of issues including the proposed lease of water at Lake DeSmet. They chose to stick to the original lease conditions and not negotiate at all with Johnson County.
Mark Fowden, Chief Of Fisheries with Wyoming G&F, gave the Commission a presentation on the history of the proposed Lake DeSmet water lease on Wednesday and discussed ongoing negotiations for leasing water rights at the lake from the Lake DeSmet Counties Coalition, according to Johnson County Commissioner Smokey Wildeman.
Sheridan County is in favor of the proposed lease, while Johnson County is opposed.
Commissioner Wildeman attended the meetings in Lander to provide a list of reasons the county is opposed to the lease agreement in its present form, in hopes of opening negotiations on the terms of the lease.
Wildeman said the Game and Fish listened to the presentations and ultimately stuck to their original proposal for the lease.
The next step in the process is not clear, according to Wildeman, but the Johnson County Commissioners will need to discuss the terms and decide if they are acceptible in the next couple of months.