The Columbia Basin Development League’s annual conference will a virtual affair this year, titled “With Once Voice”. CBDL Deputy Director Sara Higgins said the forum is for stakeholders, like land owners, local, state and federal officials as well as residents to discuss the latest information pertaining to the Columbia Basin and irrigation.
She noted several guest speakers will take part, including Madison Moore, Agriculture Economist with the Washington state Department of Agriculture.
“She’s relatively new to that position and has already engaged with the Columbia Basin Project and the Odessa Groundwater Replacement Program on a couple of efforts to collect some information. So she’s already familiar with the project. We’re going to hear from her a little bit more about the [project’s] impact in terms of jobs, things like income tax and the value of irrigated ag.”
The Columbia Basin Project is responsible for hundreds of crops with an annual economic impact of over $5 billion.
“We also delve into what’s going on in the individual irrigation districts in the Columbia Basin Project. What projects are they working on? How are they making improvements? Then we take a look at the broader scope of things in terms of how water infrastructure even gets funded. Water infrastructure is a hot topic this year in [Washington D.C.] and we are hoping to see a package introduced later this year. We’ll be talking about how it gets funded not only on the federal side, but also on the state side.”
This year’s virtual conference takes place March 4th from 9 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. Admission is $40. Visit the CBDL’s Website to learn more or two register.
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