The most comprehensive water information resource in Colorado, the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) represents Denver, all major water basins and other organizations in its collaborative effort to promote the protection and proper utilization of waters in the state. Its mission is to develop, conserve, manage and protect Colorado’s waters for present-day and future generations.
Established more than 75 years ago, the CWCB provides direction on water concerns. Aside from maintaining expertise on various programs, it provides technical assistance to further the use of the state’s water.
The responsibilities of CWCB, which is administered by a 15-member Board, includes protecting the lakes and streams in Colorado, watershed protection, flood mitigation, stream restoration, water supply planning, water project financing and drought planning. It also works toward protecting the water apportionments of the state in association with other federal agencies and western states.
Every program launched by the CWCB is directed by a Strategic Plan and by Statutory Authorities and Responsibilities. Subject to annual Board review, the Strategic Plan consists of a Board Member Work Plan, guiding the actions of the Board and helping in the implementation of the agency’s objectives.
During the usual flood season in Colorado between May and September, the CWCB provides a Flood Threat Bulletin (FTB) service containing an overview of flood threats within the state. This service includes daily basin-specific forecasts, 24-hour precipitation maps and seven to 15-day flood threat outlooks.
The CWCB also offers a series of one-day workshop across the state, providing knowledge to attendees for them to fully understand and use new available resources for better drought planning.
The agency supports the Colorado Water for the 21st Century Act, which led to the creation of the Interbasin Compact Committee (IBCC), with technical, staff and financial support. It guarantees the proper coordination of information, resources and policies for every Basin Roundtable.
The CWCB also works with the US Army Corps of Engineers to look into the conversion of existing storage space in Chatfield Reservoir for multi-purpose use, such as municipal, agricultural and industrial uses. This project enjoys strong support from special districts, government agencies and officials, and non-profit interests.
With over 40 employees, the agency functions under eight key program areas. These are administration & management, finance, interstate & general, office of water conservation & drought planning, stream & lake protection, water information, water supply planning, and watershed & flood protection.
The agency is virtually self-funded, without receiving any cash from the General Fund. Most of its funding appropriations are derived from its Construction Fund.