BILLINGS, Mont. --
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Omaha District and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation will co-host an official ribbon cutting ceremony on July 26, at 11:00 a.m. on Joe’s Island near Glendive to celebrate the completion of the Lower Yellowstone Intake Diversion Dam Fish Passage Project. The celebration will also acknowledge Reclamation’s 120th anniversary.
Attendees will include Col. (P) Geoff Van Epps, commander, USACE Northwestern Division, Col. Mark Himes, commander, USACE Omaha District, and representatives from the USBR and U.S. Department of the Interior, among others.
The success of this three-year, $44 million Omaha District civil works project was due in part to the joint coordination efforts and contributions of intergovernmental organizations, and collective resources to help improve passage for the endangered pallid sturgeon and to ensure continued irrigation diversions to the Lower Yellowstone Project.
“This is a momentous occasion more than ten years in the making,” Col. (P) Geoff Van Epps, commander, USACE Northwest Division, said. “The collaboration on this project presented unique challenges and opportunities to meet conservation and recovery responsibilities under the Endangered Species Act while continuing to serve the needs of stakeholders that use the river. The professionalism and mutual respect of all involved provided a healthy, dynamic work climate in which to operate to achieve common goals and objectives.”
The Lower Yellowstone Project is a 58,000-acre irrigation project located in eastern Montana and western North Dakota. The project is operated and maintained by the Lower Yellowstone Irrigation District Board of Control under contract with Reclamation.
Media representatives interested in attending should RSVP to Brittany Jones at (406) 247-7611, or firstname.lastname@example.org, no later than Friday, July 22.
For media unable to attend, photos, videos and a news release will be available following the ceremony.