20-02: A resolution for the study of erosion on the Flathead River

WHEREAS: The lower Flathead River in Flathead County is bordered by a substantial privately-owned lands of agricultural, ecological, and economic importance; and

WHEREAS: Recreational use of the Flathead River has increased; and

WHEREAS: Many landowners and agricultural producers have recently reported substantial increases in streambank damage from erosion; and

WHEREAS: Excessive erosion to Flathead River streambanks endangers important agricultural lands, water resources, riparian vegetation, and aquatic systems.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED: MACD work with local Legislators to introduce a resolution at the 2021 Session of the Montana State Legislature for the study of erosion on the Flathead River from the confluence of the North Fork and Middle Fork of the Flathead River to Flathead Lake; and

THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: The study be conducted by a taskforce chaired by the Flathead Conservation District and including these members: Flathead River Commission, Flathead Basin Commission, Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks, and including at least two members of the public representing recreation and agriculture groups; and

THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: The Taskforce will compile existing data on the causes and impacts of erosion on Flathead River. Further, the Taskforce will determine information gaps and collect additional data, as necessary; and

THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: The Taskforce will produce a report for presentation to the 2023 legislature including conclusions and recommended measures to prevent erosion to Flathead River streambanks within Flathead County.