Topeka — State water officials today decided to start a study of the Kansas River, but said they wanted to take a go-slow approach.
The Kansas Water Office had proposed a major review of causes of channel degradation on the 170-mile river, often called the Kaw.
But after concerns raised by representatives of the aggregate dredging industry, the Kansas Water Authority, which is the state advisory arm on water issues, decided to approve only the first phase of the study.
"There are a whole lot of questions," Authority Chairman Steve Irsik said. "It kind of feels like we're stepping off into a black hole."
The authority granted the Water Office permission to conduct the first phase of the study and report back to the authority in June. The first phase includes a review of the many studies that have already been done on the Kaw.
After seeing that report, the authority said it would then decide whether to proceed further.