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Bureau of Reclamation keeps eye on reservoir levels, water shortage

The Bureau of Reclamation is keeping a close eye on runoff in the Colorado River and met last week to talk about how it will respond to the ongoing drought.

The bureau noted that it’s too soon to tell what spring runoff will be like and noted the back and forth nature of winter precipitation so far. The agency did not announce any policy for water uses and said that keeping water in Lake Powell remains a priority.

Plans will be adjusted according to snowmelt. 

“They will be updated more frequently as needed," said Reclamation spokesman Rod Smith. "How will we know if it's needed? Cause we’re going to keep an eye on all this stuff. If we get a really wet period or a really dry period, that may cause us to make some adjustments.”

The presentation kicked off a comment period that ends Feb. 17.

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Ron Dungan has lived in Arizona for more than 35 years. He has worked as a reporter, construction worker, copy editor, designer and freelance writer. He's a graduate of the University of Iowa, where he was a member of the undergraduate Writers’ Workshop, and has a master’s in history from Arizona State University.Dungan was an outdoors reporter and member of the storyteller team at the Arizona Republic, where he won several awards, and was a contributor on a border project that won the 2018 Pulitzer for explanatory reporting.When not working, Dungan enjoys books, gardening, hanging out with his German shorthaired pointer, backpacking and fly-fishing. He's a fan of the Arizona Cardinals and Iowa Hawkeyes.