After many years, the GID Board elected to put the GID pastures out for public auction. This was done to facilitate a market value correction and to allow other water users an opportunity to participate with the grazing lease program. GID administers over 23,200 acres of Federal ground on behalf of the Bureau of Reclamation. In the past, GID has retained the pasture lease revenue to offset costs and help with overall District O&M. The grazing revenue is approximately 5% of our total revenue. We are working with the Bureau to retain this money.
The bid results included 91 individual bid forms, representing 253 separate parcel bids on 76 different pastures. For the most part, everyone treated the process respectively and submitted competitive bids on select pastures. Bid results ranged from $15 to $75/AUM.
Going forward, the leases were revised in that the GID Board has elected to tighten oversight of the pastures in order to protect this source of GID revenue and to continue control the pastures for the benefit of local water users. For example,
- Lease transfers will be limited to immediate family members directly involved with the livestock operations;
- Sub-leasing and adding of names to the leases are gone;
- The leased pasture must be used for grazing and any pasture resting requires Board approval;
- Non-grazing activity on the pastures are subject to Board approval and require a Special use Permit from the Bureau.
- Leases will be for a period of 10 years.