Here are some answers to questions you may have regarding the Truckee River Fund. For further information, please contact John Enloe, Project Manager, Truckee Meadows Water Authority (775) 834-8250, or Lauren Renda, Program Officer, Community Foundation of Western Nevada (775) 333-5499.
Why has Truckee Meadows Water Authority (TMWA) created a fund that protects and enhances water quality or water resources of the Truckee River, or its watershed?
- TMWA is charged with the task of ensuring it is supplying customers with water that is safe, clean and meets all Federal EPA Standards. Proper management of the Truckee River, which provides 85% of the water delivered in the Truckee Meadows, is vital to sustaining a healthy community. TMWA is dedicated to protecting and enhancing the Truckee River as our primary water resource.
- In 2005, the Nevada Attorney General concluded that Truckee Meadows Water Authority could legally make “charitable contributions” to the Truckee River Fund as long as the money would be spent on projects within the utility’s jurisdiction, such as protecting its water source.
- A 2005 audit by the Nevada State Bureau of Consumer Protection stated the creation of the Fund was “Appropriate to ensure the continued access and use of TMWA’s primary water supply commodity.”
- The Truckee River Fund is a thoroughly public process. All Fund Advisor meetings and TMWA Board meetings, where projects are discussed and approved, are publicized in advance and open to the public. The Truckee River Fund website contains detailed information on fund allocation, the advisory committee, the application process and more.
- The projects funded by the Truckee River Fund are projects that TMWA would normally have undertaken in order to protect our water supply. However, the creation of a fund gives TMWA a mechanism to secure matching funds. This enables TMWA to complete projects at a much lower cost than if TMWA was paying for the entire amount.
How does TMWA determine what kind of projects the Truckee River Fund will fund?
- All projects are recommended for funding by the Truckee River Fund advisors through a stringent selection process and are then taken to the TMWA Board of Directors at a public meeting for final approval. All projects must meet strict criteria requirements and have to prove a direct benefit to TMWA and TMWA customers in the form of protecting and enhancing water quality or water resources.
- The Truckee River Fund utilizes an Advisory Committee of nine members. The Advisory Committee equally represents and is appointed by the three political entities in the area: Washoe County, City of Reno, and City of Sparks.
- Projects are solicited through an open and competitive Request for Proposal process and must target specific projects needed to protect the water supply.
- Each project must secure matching funds from a partner organization or agency in order to be eligible for funding, thus maximizing and leveraging funds.
See funded projects to date here.