Nebraska Governor-elect Jim Pillen retains Director of Natural Resources

(Nati Harnik | AP)
Published: Dec. 2, 2022 at 12:19 PM CST
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LINCOLN, Neb. (WOWT) - Governor-Elect Jim Pillen has retained another cabinet position with plans to move forward on a canal project.

According to the Office of the Governor-Elect, Pillen has decided to retain the state’s Director of the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources, Tom Riley.

Riley has been the Director of Natural Resources since 2020. Previously he spent 20 years at the Flatwater Group and was a company founder.

Pillen says he plans to make the Perkins Canal project a priority when he’s in office, and Riley will be a leader on the plan.

“Tom has shown visionary leadership in fighting to preserve and protect our state’s most precious resource, our water,” said Governor-elect Pillen. “He has worked for years with Nebraska stakeholders on the Perkins water project. His leadership is vital in bringing this water home to Nebraska. Tom will continue to pursue policies that benefit our farmers and ranchers.”

Pillen’s office says while at the Flatwater Group, Riley worked on water projects across the state involving irrigation, water supply and restoration.

According to the Department of Natural Resources, the Perkins County Canal Project is a plan “to protect Nebraska’s full entitlement to the flows of the South Platte River.”