• If you are citizen of an European Union member nation, you may not use this service unless you are at least 16 years old.

  • Work with all your cloud files (Drive, Dropbox, and Slack and Gmail attachments) and documents (Google Docs, Sheets, and Notion) in one place. Try Dokkio (from the makers of PBworks) for free. Now available on the web, Mac, Windows, and as a Chrome extension!


Tongue River Watershed Project Outreach

Page history last edited by Christina Staten 8 months, 2 weeks ago Saved with comment


Tongue River Home Page          Salinity Model          TMDL Development


Water Quality Data and Assessment          Restoration and Protection 


 Outreach          Contacts


Page Contents


Project Announcements and Updates



Announcement or Update

October 1, 2020

Project updates:

  • A new TMDL writer has been assigned to this project: Christy Meredith. She can be reached at Christy.Meredith@mt.gov
  • The project modeler position is still vacant, but continues to be temporarily filled by Eric Regensburger
  • A contract has been initiated with the consulting firm Tetra Tech to continue water quality modeling work for this project. This contract is being funded by the U.S. EPA. Work is expected to be complete by May of next year, which includes running additional model scenarios to continue the evaluation of salinity sources in the watershed. Completion of this contract will not complete modeling work, however. 
  • DEQ will continue to fund the Tongue River Reservoir Dam, Brandenberg, and Miles City USGS gages for continuous flow and SC monitoring in 2021.  
December 17, 2019 Project update: The project modeler team member position for the Tongue TMDL project is still vacant; therefore, modeling work for this project is incomplete. DEQ will be advertising, and hopes to fill, this position in early 2020. DEQ has been drafting an Electrical Conductivity and Sodium Adsorption Ratio water quality assessment method for the Tongue River, which will be available for a 60-day public comment period in spring 2020. Public comment for the new assessment method will occur simultaneously with public comment for the state's Water Quality Integrated Report (Montana's reporting to the U.S. EPA on waters monitored and found impaired during 2018 and 2019). When available, both draft documents will be posted on DEQ's Clean Water Act Information Center at: https://cwaic.mt.gov Public comment dates have not yet been set, however. 
July 1, 2019 DEQ funding for continuous specific conductance (SC) monitoring at the Brandenberg and Miles City USGS gages has been extended until June 30, 2020. Both flow and water quality data will continue to be collected at these gages throughout the irrigation season.
May 28, 2019

Several announcements/updates:

  • DEQ is jointly funding flow and water quality data collection at three USGS gages this year: Tongue River Reservoir dam, Brandenberg, and Miles City. The Brandenberg and Miles City data collection is only for the spring months of March, April, and May. 
  • The project modeler, Erik Makus, left DEQ in January. Eric Regensburger, a long-time modeler for DEQ, is temporarily filling this role. Additionally, Dean Yashan, Section Supervisor of DEQ's TMDL program and the lead for developing the Tongue River TMDL, will be leaving the TMDL program in July. A new Tongue River TMDL project manager has not yet been determined. 
  • DEQ is currently continuing work on determining the TMDL's allocations, and is actively working with the entities most affected by the allocations. The next stakeholder meeting will be scheduled once core details for each allocation have been established.
  • The Tongue River project pages on this site are undergoing updates to provide the most current project information. 
July 17, 2018 A stakeholder meeting will be held Wednesday, August 29, 2018 at 5:00 p.m. in Room 106 of Miles Community College in Miles City, MT. Call-in information and the presentation will be posted in the Meetings and Presentations table below, the day of the meeting. Please contact Christina with any questions: (406) 444-2836 or CStaten@mt.gov
October 12, 2017 The next stakeholder meeting is being planned for early 2018 (January - February timeframe) to review final model results and have an in-depth discussion on how EC and SAR TMDLs will be written for the lower two segments of the Tongue River.
August 16, 2017 A stakeholder meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, October 10, 2017 at 4 p.m. in Room 106 of the Miles Community College. The presentation and a call-in number will be posted in the below "Meetings and Presentations" table the day of the meeting. 
June 6, 2017


The meeting will be rescheduled and a notice will be posted when a new meeting date is determined. The meeting will most likely be held in August.

Contact Christina with any questions: (406) 444-2836

April 5, 2017 The next stakeholder meeting is scheduled for Thursday, June 15, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. in Room 106 at Miles Community College. An agenda, the presentation, and a call-in number will be posted in the below "Meetings and Presentations" table a few days before the meeting.
December 6, 2016 DEQ has reviewed all of the scenario suggestions for the Tongue River salinity model and determined which scenarios will be modeled. A list of the scenarios with information on their feasibility and whether they will be modeled is available for download. We anticipate having the next stakeholder meeting in Miles City in March 2017 where we will share and discuss the results of completed model scenarios. A meeting notice and additional details will be posted when a date has been set. 
October 19, 2016 The presentation from the October 11, 2016 stakeholder meeting in Miles City is available in the Meetings & Presentations table below. A list of potential model scenarios, primarily based on suggestions received at the meeting, is also contained in the table. Please submit any additional scenario suggestions to Erik Makus at EMakus@mt.gov by October 31, 2016. 
August 11, 2016

A stakeholder meeting will be held at Miles Community College (Room 106) in Miles City at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, October 11, 2016. The main topic of discussion will be what land management scenarios will be run with the salinity water quality model that DEQ is developing for the Tongue River, and how the outcome of the scenarios may influence the TMDL.

An agenda will be posted one to two weeks prior to the meeting. Please contact Christina Staten if you have questions concerning the meeting (406-444-2836).

July 6, 2016

Tongue River TMDL project pages were released on this site. Some pages are still under development and additional information will be posted in the coming weeks. 



Meetings and Presentations



Presentations and Handouts

April 21, 2016

Miles Community College


DEQ held a stakeholder meeting to provide an overview of the project, details of the Tongue River salinity water quality model, and an explanation of the TMDL development process


Meeting Agenda

April 21, 2016 presentation (6.86 MB)

October 11, 2016

Miles Community College

Room 106

5:30 p.m.


DEQ held a stakeholder meeting to discuss potential scenarios to run with the water quality model being developed for the Tongue River.


Meeting Agenda

October 11, 2016 Presentation (4.05 MB)


List of Suggested Model Scenarios - October 2016 (84 KB)

Model Scenario Determinations - December 2016 (97 KB)

October 10, 2017

Miles Community College

Room 106

4:00 p.m.


DEQ held a stakeholder meeting to discuss results of modeled scenarios. 

October 10, 2017 Presentation (6.23 MB)


August 29, 2018

Miles Community College

Room 106

5:00 p.m.


DEQ discussed how the salinity TMDL(s) may be calculated for the lower Tongue River and approaches for determining TMDL allocations

August 29, 2018 Presentation (6.28 MB)

Handout: Table of Potential TMDL Allocations  (91 KB)

Handout Explanation (121 KB)




Opportunities for Collaboration

DEQ relies on input from people who live and work in our project area watersheds to provide input on where problem areas exist, where water quality restoration work has taken place, on the methods used for developing TMDLs, and for providing a check on the quality of our work. DEQ considers stakeholder input to be valuable and constructive feedback to be helpful for improving our processes.


For the Tongue River salinity project, stakeholders may partner with DEQ in the following ways:



Tongue River Project Contacts



DEQ Contact



Project Coordinator

Christina Staten


(406) 444-2836

Project Modeler*

Eric Regensburger


(406) 444-6714

Salinity TMDL Project Manager

Christy Meredith


(406) 444-6824

* The project modeler changed from Erik Makus to Eric Regensburger in January 2019


See the Tongue River Watershed Project Contacts page for a full description of each project team member's role and for a list of additional contacts. 


Click on the Adobe Reader icon if you need to download the free Adobe Acrobat software in order to view the PDF documents on this page. 


Page Released: July 6, 2016
Last Updated: February 4, 2021