The Lower Niobrara NRD Board voted to allow up to 500 new irrigated acres in the District at their June 3rd meeting. With the increase in static water levels over the last few years, the completion of certifying the irrigated acres in the District and requests received from irrigators the Board approved the Groundwater Management Committee recommendation. The Lower Niobrara NRD will be accepting applications starting July 1st and ending August 31st with a nonrefundable fee for new acres. Each application will go through a ranking process and be reviewed by the Groundwater Management Committee. Their recommendations will then be presented at the September Board meeting for approval. The highest priority will be given to applications which complete circles–example removal of old farmstead. There is a stipulation of not more than 25% of currently irrigated acres can be added to a single field. The recommendation also included no helper wells are to be added to these systems and not to allow transfers of irrigated acres at this time. Department of Natural Resources can also allow new surface water acres up to 1/3 of the 500 acres. Please contact the Lower Niobrara NRD at (402) 775-2343 if you are interested.