declaring beneficial use in water use groups n.
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Declaring Beneficial Use in Water Use Groups

Declaring Beneficial Use in Water Use Groups

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Declaring Beneficial Use in Water Use Groups

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  1. Declaring Beneficial Use in Water Use Groups R655-16

  2. GENERAL PROVISIONS • An acceptably complete Declaration of Individual Beneficial Use Amounts (Declaration) must include: • Beneficial use for each water right • Signed by all water right holders • Documentation • Apportionment method – any consistent with S.E. records • Not a general adjudication of water rights

  3. CHANGE APPLICATIONS • Declaration shall be required only if all of the following conditions apply: • Fewer than all the water rights in group • Removes water right from group • Beneficial uses have not been quantified; AND • Nature of change requires quantification

  4. WATER RIGHT PROOF • Declaration may be required if: • Beneficial use has not been quantified; AND • Fewer than all water rights in group; OR • Water right holder does not hold all water rights in group.

  5. ADDITIONALLY • A Declaration does not change the way supplemental water rights can be used together. May continue to use remaining rights as they have historically been used. • A filed Declaration may only be revised by filing a new Declaration

  6. S.E. REVIEW & EVALUATION • Inconsistent with SE record – Return with explanation • Consistent with SE record – Update SE records accordingly • Request for review of database & documentary records – correcting water use groupings. • S.E. may modify water use group records at any time to resolve errors, deficiencies or ambiguities.

  7. S.E. APPORTIONMENT • May request apportionment if: • Necessary for administrative action; and • Reasonable efforts exhausted without success: • Impossible to identify/contact one or more parties • One or more parties refuse to participate • Other reason which prevents completion of Declaration

  8. S.E. APPORTIONMENT (cont.) • Application on S.E. form • Provide all info requested & documentation • Acknowledge not a general adjudication • Provide notice to other parties as possible • S.E. review for completeness, compliance with application criteria & adequate effort • Incomplete / Non-compliant / Insufficient effort: Return with explanation • Complete / Compliant / Sufficient effort: File application & apportion

  9. S.E. APPORTIONMENT (cont.) • Procedure: • Notify all parties & request information • Allow at least 30 days for reply • S.E. will review: • Info from application • Info received pursuant to request • Other pertinent information (including SE records) • S.E. prepare preliminary apportionment

  10. S.E. APPORTIONMENT (cont.) • Notify parties of preliminary apportionment • Advise of right to protest • 30 days protest period • May hold a hearing • Review further info & revise apportionment if necessary • Issue SE Order (final agency action) • Subject to UAPA • Update SE records accordingly

  11. EXCEPTIONS • S.E. may require Declaration any time during administrative action if needed. • A water right holder may declare no beneficial use at any time. • Beneficial use quantified by court or other legal instrument – may be submitted to S.E. at any time. • SE may cancel water right assignment to a water use group

  12. EXAMPLES • The following examples apply regardless of who the water user is (municipality, irrigator, federal agency or any other type of water user) or what the nature of use of the water use group is (municipal, irrigation, etc.)

  13. 1 • A water right holder with a right in a water use group desires to change the POD of his water right but not the source (i.e. surface or underground). • No Declaration is required because the water right is not being removed from the water use group.

  14. 2 • A water right is purchased that is in a water use group; the water rights are held by several individual water users. The purchaser wants to change the place of use, point of diversion, and nature of use of the water right. The change would make the water right supplemental to other rights in another water use group. • A Declaration must be filed on the water rights in the group the water right is being taken. • No Declaration required for the water use group the water right would be added to.

  15. 3 • A well water right in a water use group with irrigation company water rights; the holder uses both to irrigate. The purchaser of the well right desires to change the POD, POU and nature of use. • The S.E. may be petitioned to remove the water right from the irrigation company water use group because it will not affect the administration or use of the irrigation company’s water rights. • The beneficial use associated with the well water right must be determined but there is no need to submit a Declaration on the other water rights in the water use group the right came from.

  16. 4 • Change applications are filed to change the POD, POU and nature of use of all of the water rights in a water use group. • A Declaration is not required as long as the water rights remain linked together in their supplemental relationship (the PODs may be different but the hereafter POU and nature of use must be the same for each of the rights).

  17. 5 • A water right holder owns water rights in several water use groups (the holder owns all the water rights in each group). The holder believes the groupings don’t reflect how the water rights are being used. • The holder can petition the S.E. to revise the water right groupings. The groupings can be adjusted without further administrative process if adjustment does not cause a change in the POD, POU or nature of use of the water rights and is consistent with the S.E. records. • If the adjustment will cause such a change, then change applications will be required.

  18. 6 • A water right with a defined beneficial use amount is added as a supplemental water right in a water use group where the individual beneficial use amounts have not been defined for the other water rights. The water right is later sold and the purchaser desires to change the POD, POU and nature of use of the water right. • No Declaration is required because the beneficial use amount of that specific water right has already been defined.

  19. 7 • Someone leases a water right in a water use group and desires to file a temporary change application to change the POD, POU and nature of use of the water right. • Given the temporary nature of the change, the SE determines if there is no need to know the individual beneficial use amount of the water right and whether a Declaration is required.

  20. 8 • An irrigation company owns multiple water rights that are grouped in several water use groups. A shareholder desires to file a change on shares to change the POD, POU and the nature of use. • No Declaration is required. Based upon the number of acres irrigated per share, the S.E. reduces the total number of acres irrigated by the company rather than addressing each individual group.