September 5, 2008

Assistant Attorney General Ronald J. Tenpas to Participate in Historic Signing Ceremony With Secretary of the Interior Kempthorne, Sen. Harry Reid and Other Dignitaries

WASHINGTON, Sept. 5 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Ronald J. Tenpas, Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division, will participate in the Truckee River Operating Agreement signing ceremony, a historic reservoir operations agreement between the United States, the states of California and Nevada, the Truckee Meadows Water Authority, and the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of Indians. The ceremony will take place on SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, 2008, at 12:00 P.M. PDT.

WHO: Ronald J. Tenpas, Assistant Attorney General, Justice Department Harry Reid, U.S. Senator, State of Nevada

   Dirk Kempthorne, Secretary, Department of the Interior   Mervin Wright, Jr., Chairman, Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of Indians   Mike Chrisman, Resources Secretary, California  
Mike Carrigan, Chairman Board of Directors, Truckee Meadows Water Authority

   WHAT: Signing Ceremony with Remarks    WHEN: SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, 2008   12:00 P.M. PDT    WHERE: Wingfield Park on the Truckee River   1st Street and Arlington Avenue   Reno, NV 89501    OPEN PRESS    

BACKGROUND: To resolve more than 100 years of conflict and litigation over the water in the region, the Department of the Interior, the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of Indians, Department of Justice, states of California and Nevada, and the Truckee Meadows Water Authority will sign the agreement before an audience of more than 400 individuals representing organizations that helped develop the agreement.

The agreement is the fulfillment of requirements of the 1990 Truckee-Carson-Pyramid Lake Water Rights Settlement Act, sponsored by Sen. Reid, which directed the Secretary of the Interior to negotiate an operating agreement for the major federal and private reservoirs on the Truckee River system upstream of Reno. This river system is the only source of water for Pyramid Lake and for the growing communities of Reno and Sparks, Nev. The implementation of the agreement is also an essential step to final congressional approval of the interstate allocation of the Truckee River, Carson River and Lake Tahoe between the states of California and Nevada, and fulfills the requirements of the Settlement Act for the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of Indians.

The Truckee River Operating Agreement removes no water rights and benefits all users by ensuring efficient coordination of the operation of the reservoirs for the purposes of storage, release and exchange of water. All unappropriated water goes to the tribe -- up to 400,000 acre feet per year. The agreement also provides storage space in the reservoirs to increase municipal drought supplies for Reno and Sparks, benefit instream flows for fishery and water quality purposes, and enhance reservoir levels for recreation use.

For more information on the historic Truckee River Operating Agreement, please visit

U.S. Department of Justice

CONTACT: U.S. Department of Justice, +1-202-514-2007

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