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June 5, 2006

Instream Flow Workshops Set for San Antonio, Dallas

AUSTIN, Texas — Three state agencies are seeking public input in connection with workshops on June 15 in San Antonio and July 12 in Dallas to help finalize the Texas Instream Flow Program Technical Overview, a document to guide research concerning how much water should be flowing in Texas rivers to support a sound ecological environment.

The draft overview document describes scientific methodologies recommended for conducting research studies as part of the Texas Instream Flow Program. It reflects responses to a comprehensive scientific review completed by the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences in 2005, plus changes the agencies believe are important. Anyone can view or download the draft Technical Overview (look for the version revised 05/22/06) on the Texas Instream Flow Program website.

The Texas Water Development Board, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department are jointly hosting the workshops. The agencies have retained the Center for Public Policy Dispute Resolution at The University of Texas School of Law to help plan and facilitate the workshops.

Both workshops run 9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m. The agenda starts with a summary presentation and question and answer session about the Texas Instream Flow Program, then moves to opportunities for stakeholder participation in studies. Two concurrent breakout sessions will be held mid-morning: one on hydrology and hydraulics and one on biology. After lunch, concurrent breakout sessions will cover physical processes and water quality. Following these, a plenary session on integration will discuss how information gathered during each technical element is used to make a flow determination. The workshops will conclude with a Next Steps section covering how stakeholder input will be used, how to make additional comments, and how the state agencies will finalize the technical overview.

The San Antonio workshop will take place June 15 at the University of Texas at San Antonio, Retama Auditorium (Room 2.02.02) at 6900 N. Loop 1604 West.

The Dallas workshop will take place July 12 at Green Auditorium, Dallas City Hall, 1500 Marilla Street.

Additional information about the workshops, including an agenda and driving and parking directions, are on the Texas Instream Flow Program website. Further questions may also be directed to the following staff members with the three agencies:

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