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The Weekly News Source for Wyoming's Ranchers, Farmers and AgriBusiness Community

It Wasn’t Too Bad

by Wyoming Livestock Roundup

As 2011 winds down, we look forward to 2012 with renewed hope and enthusiasm.  Remember, we’re each a year older, but if you are involved in ranching, farming or a related business, you have to have a positive attitude. Despite a few bumps, 2011 wasn’t too bad, was it?  
   First off, almost all of the state had adequate (record) snowpack in the mountains, and there was plenty of irrigating water or runoff. Some places, especially in the Upper North Platte drainage and the Little Snake River, we had a little too much, but the damage and fencing were fixed and we await next spring. The large storage reservoirs along the North Platte and other rivers hold plenty of water for the moment, and it’s good to have that head start.
    The sad fact for Wyoming is that John Lawson, Wyoming Area Manager for the Bureau of Reclamation, is retiring after almost 40 years in government service – a service that affected many people and businesses in Wyoming, Colorado and Nebraska. He managed 20 power plants around the area and, most importantly, he juggled the flow of water through the numerous dams on the major river systems, not only to lessen the threat of flooding farmlands and many towns along the river, but also to ensure the optimum water supply and reserve for irrigators across these states. This monumental task required round-the-clock decision making that had John spending many a night in his office, using never ending data coming to make many decisions that were necessary to control flooding. We always wondered if John had a set of dice back in his office, but we soon realized his decisions were based on raw data and his great experience. Many of us never realized until last year how good and monumental his decisions were, and they did affect a lot of people and businesses. John was always willing to support Wyoming Ag in the Classroom in many ways, and even took the time to come himself and speak to teachers. He always had a willingness to work with others, use a common sense approach and recognize how he could help fisherman and recreationists on the rivers and lakes, and we will miss him. We wish him well and good health on his retirement.
    As the year ends, we hear the good news that livestock and farm products should stay high, fuel should come down and export demand for our products overseas should stay strong. We hope the political mess in Washington, D.C. gets straightened out, and our leaders come to their senses, while we are very thankful for the common sense, down-to-earth thinking of our Congressional delegation. We hope other states follow their direction. We are thankful for our strong leadership in state government, and our state legislature that uses their conservative approach for fiscal control of our state funds. Our state is in good hands.
    From the whole Roundup Team, we wish you and your families a blessed Christmas and the best of New Years. 2012 will be a great year.

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