Laramie County Control Area

Current Advisory Board Members

Name

Cody Smith

Todd Fornstrom

Laurie Jackson

Ryan Kirkbride

Brady Petsch

City

Carpenter

Pine Bluffs

Hillsdale

Cheyenne

Meriden

District

1

2

3

4

5

Expiration

7/31/2024

7/31/2024

7/31/2024

7/31/2027

7/31/2027

Upcoming Meetings

None scheduled at this time.

History Timeline

March 1, 1971 – the Pine Bluffs Critical Area was established by the State Engineer due to conflicts between water users, groundwater levels decline in portions of the area, and it was felt to be in the best interest of the public. 

March 7, 1973 – the Carpenter Critical Area was established by the State Engineer due to requests from area residents, appeared groundwater levels were declining, and it was in the public's interest to institute some type of control measures.

1973 – Legislature changed the designation of “Critical Areas” to “Control Areas” and granted the SE additional authority with Control Areas

June 1976 – the State Engineer’s Office received a verbal request from several groundwater appropriators located in eastern Laramie County to investigate groundwater conditions throughout Laramie County. 

July 26, 1976 – the SEO received a written request from appropriators of groundwater in eastern Laramie County, to establish a county-wide groundwater Control Area.

August 5, 1976 – the SEO received a written request from groundwater appropriators near Albin to establish an Albin Groundwater Control Area, which would be separate from any county-wide control area which might be established. 

October 1, 1976 – the SE submitted a memorandum to the Board of Control (BOC), recommending the modification of the existing Pine Bluffs and Carpenter Control Area boundaries and the establishment of a new Control Area, the Albin Groundwater Control Area.

October 20, 1976 – the SE received a written request that a central Laramie County Groundwater Control Area be established.

October 1976 – the U.S. Geological Survey and the SEO commenced a digital model investigation of Laramie, County.

November 16, 1976 – the BOC held a public hearing to consider the modification of the Pine Bluffs and Carpenter Groundwater Control Area boundaries and the establishment of a new Albin Groundwater Control Area. 

February 14, 1977 - the BOC held a special meeting to consider the comments received subsequent to the public hearing in connection with the establishment of a new Albin Groundwater Control Area and the expansion of two existing Control Areas in Laramie County. As a result, the BOC agreed not to establish a new groundwater Control Area or amend existing Control Areas but to request the State Engineer implement a moratorium on the issuance of new, high capacity well permits in eastern Laramie County. The moratorium would stay in effect until the results of the U.S. Geological Survey’s groundwater model study were known and a decision was reached by the BOC. 

May 1977 – construction commenced of observation wells to be used in conjunction with the investigation of Laramie County groundwater conditions.

August 17, 1977 – the BOC was notified that the observation wells were in place and the groundwater modeling effort was continuing.

January 31, 1978 – the BOC held a special meeting in Lusk, Wyoming during which the BOC recommended that the moratorium in Laramie County be extended until March 1, 1978.  

March 1, 1978 – Marvin Crist (U.S. Geological Survey) presented the preliminary results of the Laramie County groundwater model to the BOC after which the BOC recommended the moratorium be extended.

December 8, 1978 – the BOC recommended the moratorium be extended.  

February 5, 1979 – Mr. Crist presented the results of the Laramie County groundwater model to the BOC, the Pine Bluffs and Carpenter Groundwater Control Area Advisory Board members, and the Division I Groundwater Advisory Committee members.

March 20, 1979 – Mr. Crist presented the results of additional computer runs to the BOC after which the BOC recommended the moratorium be extended.

September 20, 1979 – a public information meeting was held at the Community Center in Pine Bluffs. 

November 28, 1979 – the BOC discussed the Laramie County groundwater situation but chose to take no action because the laws made no provisions for sub districting within a Control Area. 

January 4, 1980 – the BOC at a special meeting recommended the moratorium be extended.  

March 7, 1980 – the BOC recommended the moratorium be extended.  

November 18, 1990 – the BOC referred the matter to a public hearing compliant with W.S. §41-3-912, Wyoming Statutes 1977, and recommended the moratorium be extended for one year. 

1981 – Legislation was enacted allowing for the sub districting of groundwater Control Areas. 

May 24, 1981 – a public hearing was held at the Pine Bluffs Community Center at which the general consensus was that a county-wide control area be established with subdistricts. 

May 13, 1981 – a second hearing was held on at Laramie County Community College in Cheyenne, which resulted in mixed reactions to the establishment of a county-wide control area. 

September 2, 1981 – as a result of the evidence presented at the public hearings and submitted comments, the BOC voted to establish what is now recognized as the Laramie County Control Area. The Pine Bluffs and Carpenter Groundwater Control Areas were abolished and the lands, once included therein, were included in the new Laramie County Groundwater Control Area. 

November 18, 1981 – moratorium established on February 14, 1977 expired.

January 20, 2009 – a meeting was held in Pine Bluffs to discuss groundwater issues in the area in and surrounding Pine Bluffs. The meeting discussed declining water levels with the general consensus that as the consumptive use increases, the water levels decline.

April 11, 2012 – the SE issued a Temporary Order adopting well spacing requirements within the LCCA as means to mitigate continued further decline in groundwater levels and to provide time to develop a framework to inform future groundwater management decisions.

September 2012 – the SEO contracted with AMEC Environmental & Infrastructure (AMEC), Hinckley Consulting, and HDR, Inc., to conduct a hydrogeologic study of the LCCA to inform and provide a scientific basis for future groundwater management.

January 17, 2014 – draft findings of the AMEC report were presented in a public meeting in Cheyenne.

March 2014 – AMEC report was completed. The model depicted “current day” aquifer drawdown as compared to pre-development conditions and also evaluated future groundwater level changes with several modeling scenarios.

April 10, 2014 – the SE and the LCCA Advisory Board held a public hearing in Cheyenne to determine whether the groundwater resources of the LCCA are adequate for the needs of all appropriators of underground water in the area. The final AMEC report was presented as part of this public hearing.

May 23, 2014 – the LCCA Advisory Board met to discuss potential corrective controls and/or groundwater management options within the LCCA.

October 2014 – the Laramie County Commissioners created the LCCA Steering Committee to develop creative and effective options for reducing water use in LCCA.

March 31, 2015 – the SE received and considered the Steering Committee’s recommendations.

April 1, 2015 – the SE issued new LCCA Order requiring adjudication, flow meter installation, and well spacing on irrigation, municipal, industrial, and miscellaneous use underground water appropriations. 

Documents

Advisory Board Meeting Minutes