Water Law

2017 Legislative Updates

The Southwestern Water Conservation District provides legislative updates from the Colorado Water Congress State Affairs meetings as a service to those interested in water related legislation during the current session.


Helping Good Samaritans Clean Up Abandoned Hardrock Mines

For years Colorado legislatures have been trying to pass laws that would make it easier for groups to clean up toxic pollution from abandoned mines. These groups, which are not responsible for the pollution but want to clean it up anyway, are called, appropriately enough, Good Samaritans.


September 22, 2016--Animas River water fight headed to trial (Santa Fe New Mexican)

A yearslong dispute over water rights on the Animas River will finally go to trial in state District Court following a New Mexico Supreme Court ruling Thursday that the state engineer has full authority to regulate how water on the river is managed and diverted. The state engineer filed a complaint in District Court in 2013 against the Diamond K Bar Ranch in San Juan County, accusing the r


10th Annual Water 101 Workshop and Pilot Water 202 Session (Durango, CO)

09/22/2016 8:30 am
09/23/2016 12:00 pm

The 10th Annual Water 101 Workshop and Pilot Water 202 Session will be conducted September 22-23, 2016 at the La Plata County fairgrounds in Durango, CO. We are once again fortunate to have Colorado Supreme Court Justice Greg Hobbs (retired) as our keynot speaker.


August 10, 2016--Law lets Coloradans collect, use rainwater (Grand Junction Sentinel)

Vicki Felmlee is happy that the law has finally caught up with her. Like a lot of Coloradans, the longtime Grand Junction resident has been breaking the law for years by using rain barrels to collect water from her rooftop. That all changed Wednesday when Colorado became the last state in the nation to legalize them. “I haven’t been known for armed robbery, bribery or


July 23, 2016--Year Round Gardening: Rain barrels soon legal in Colorado (Gazette)

With the approach of legal use of rainwater collection on August 10th, Colorado residents are asking a lot of questions. Before you try reading the actual legislation, we’ll cover some of the basics. New laws allow for the collection and storage of rainwater for use on the property from which it is collected.


July 15, 2016--House measure 
would protect 
rights to water (Grand Junction Sentinel)

A measure by U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Colo., that would protect state-issued water rights against federal taking is included in an appropriations measure now headed to the Senate. Passage of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act of 2017, H.R.


July 3, 2016--Vail Daily column: Use it or lose it? (Vail Daily)

The “use it or lose it” feature of Colorado water law is often blamed for discouraging farmers and ranchers from taking efficiency and conservation measures that could benefit the environment or ease the supply and demand imbalance on the Colorado River.


June 3, 2016--Colorado water law doesn't discourage efficiency (Post Independent)

The “use it or lose it” feature of Colorado water law is often blamed for discouraging farmers and ranchers from taking efficiency and conservation measures that could benefit the environment or ease the supply/demand imbalance on the Colorado River.


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