The NDMC in conjunction with the Upper, Middle and Lower Republican Natural Resources Districts publicly released the Republican River Basin Water and Drought Portal in May 2010. The portal was developed over three years, with funding from the NOAA’s Sectoral Applications Research Program (SARP). Several NDMC staff members contributed to the content of the portal. It is a “one stop shop” for water and drought information in the Republican River Basin.
The tasks involved in the grant project were to develop website examples, gather feedback from stakeholders, incorporate stakeholder feedback into the site and propose recommendations for developing similar websites in other basins. The NDMC will work with the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) to present the Republican River Basin Water and Drought Portal as a prototype for other basins that might want to build a similar site with basin-specific information.
The researchers conducted listening sessions throughout the grant period. Participants from the Southwest Nebraska Water Conference were the initial set of stakeholders. Other listening sessions were held in Imperial, Curtis, and Alma, Nebraska. In May of 2009 the NDMC partnered with the Republican River Restoration Partners (RRRP) to host a basin-wide meeting in Oberlin, Kansas. The last session took place in Holyoke, Colorado, on July 8, 2010, where Tonya Bernadt, NDMC research and outreach specialist, gave a presentation to the Republican River Water Conservation District (RRWCD) board and local residents. Throughout the process, NDMC staff incorporated suggestions and insights from participants and stakeholders into the portal.
The Upper Republican NRD will permanently host and maintain the site.