The Lake DeSmet Counties Coalition Joint Powers Board held their May meeting in Buffalo Thursday night and one topic discussed was the proposed water lease agreement with Wyoming Game and Fish.
Johnson County's Commissioners have voiced concerns over the terms of the proposed lease, and wanted some changes to the length of the contract, and maintenance issues and the elevation level of the lake resolved.
Kim Cannon, attorney for the LDCC, told the board that he has had preliminary discussions with Game and Fish representatives, and although they have taken no formal stand or made a decision on the changes to the proposed lease, they were at least willing to listen and discuss them.
He explained that the three changes were first, to change wording to allow the buy-back of the contract after 25 years, not at the originally proposed 50 years. Second, setting operation and maintenance costs at 10.3% for G&F, which is the same percentage of water they would be leasing in the lake, offset by their costs incurred for shoreline management. Third, eliminating the reference to a minimum pool elevation of 4,580 feet above sea level.
No action was taken by the board, other than to suggest waiting for a public input meeting tentatively scheduled for June 7th.