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Douglas County Commissioners appoint 11 to the new Douglas County Water Commission

Posted on November 6, 2023 2023News and Events


Eleven appointees to the newly formed Douglas County Water Commission were named today, Monday, Nov. 6, during a posted meeting of the Board of Douglas County Commissioners.

Representing Commissioner District I are James Eklund, Jack Hilbert, and Donald Langley. Clark Hammelman, James Maras, and Roger Hudson will represent District II. District III representatives are Frank Johns, Evan Ela, and Harold Smethills. Appointees at large are Sean Tonner, and Tricia Bernhardt.

“In response to citizen demand and community survey feedback, we appointed the first ever Douglas County Water Commission, which will be charged with developing an expert-informed 2050 Comprehensive Water Plan, building on the solid foundation and service of each of our water provider partners and water stakeholders in the community,” said Commissioner Abe Laydon. “We had a uniquely strong group of candidates, and I’m immensely grateful to each person who shared their time and expertise with this process.”

“Water resources are foundational to the health of our community and the economic vitality of our businesses,” said Commissioner George Teal. “For years, our residents and business owners have desired a comprehensive long-term water plan for all of Douglas County. We are excited to begin this journey – in partnership with our more than 30 water providers – for the hard-working people of Douglas County.”

The goal of the Commission – through a culture of collaboration and mutually beneficial outcomes – is the integration of existing Douglas County water provider plans into the 2050 Comprehensive Douglas County Water Plan that will:

  1. Identify strategic policies addressing water infrastructure and storage, supply acquisition, reclamation, conservation practices, the water-land use nexus, and agricultural efficiency; and
  2. Broaden public awareness of and familiarity with issues of water supply and provision of services in Douglas County through sustainable community engagement and education initiatives.

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