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BUREAU OPTIMISTIC ABOUT WATER FLOW IN PROVO RIVER

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The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation's announcement this week that water flow in the Provo River will remain at 100 cubic feet per second this winter is good news for both fish and anglers, says the local regional fisheries manager.

Last winter, Provo River water flow was reduced to 85 cfs as a result of low water levels in the Deer Creek Reservoir. Because of the reduced flow, six miles of high-quality brown trout fishery between Deer Creek Dam and Olmstead Diversion Dam were temporarily closed to anglers to protect fish and fish habitat during low flows."I didn't think we would get a decision before Nov. 1," said Charlie Thompson, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources regional fisheries manager. "That's going to make most people happy. We hope it stays that way."

Barry Wirth, Bureau of Reclamation spokesman, said an agreement reached last November between the Bureau and water groups stipulates that Provo River flow will be maintained at 100 cfs if the reservoir contains more than 70,000 acre feet on Nov. 1, when the new water year begins.

"We're cutting it tight," Wirth said. "But it would appear that we will have in excess of 70,000 acre feet of storage in the reservoir."

However, if the new water year brings low precipitation levels, "We could be in trouble a year from now."

Wirth said the agreement on Provo River flow will be in effect until the Jordanelle Reservoir under construction between Heber City and Park City becomes operational. Officials anticipate that the new reservoir will meet Provo River's minimum-flow requirements.