2008 Legislation
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SENATE BILL NO. 1279<br /> – N. Idaho adjudication, repealed


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Bill Status

S1279.........................................................by BROADSWORD
NORTH IDAHO WATER RIGHTS ADJUDICATION - Amends and repeals existing law to
delete the North Idaho Water Rights Adjudication.

01/16    Senate intro - 1st rdg - to printing
01/17    Rpt prt - to Res/Env

Bill Text

  ]]]]              LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF IDAHO             ]]]]
 Fifty-ninth Legislature                   Second Regular Session - 2008


                                       IN THE SENATE

                                    SENATE BILL NO. 1279

                                       BY BROADSWORD

  1                                        AN ACT

  6    Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Idaho:

  7        SECTION  1.  That Section 42-1406B, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby
  8    repealed.

  9        SECTION 2.  That Section 42-1425, Idaho Code, be, and the same  is  hereby
 10    amended to read as follows:

 11        42-1425.  ACCOMPLISHED   TRANSFERS.  (1)  Legislative  findings  regarding
 12    accomplished transfers and the public interest.
 13        (a)  The legislature finds and declares that prior to the commencement  of
 14        the  Snake River basin adjudication, and the northern Idaho adjudications,
 15        many persons entitled to the use of water or owning land  to  which  water
 16        has  been  made  appurtenant either by decree of the court or under provi-
 17        sions of the constitution and statutes of this state changed the place  of
 18        use,  point  of  diversion,  nature or purpose of use, or period of use of
 19        their water rights without compliance with the transfer provisions of sec-
 20        tions 42-108 and 42-222, Idaho Code.
 21        (b)  The legislature finds that many of these changes  occurred  with  the
 22        knowledge  of other water users and that the water has been distributed to
 23        the right as changed. The legislature further finds and declares that  the
 24        continuation  of  the  historic  water  use  patterns resulting from these
 25        changes is in the local public interest provided no other  existing  water
 26        right  was  injured  at  the  time  of the change. Denial of a claim based
 27        solely upon a failure to comply with sections  42-108  and  42-222,  Idaho
 28        Code, where no injury or enlargement exists, would cause significant undue
 29        financial  impact  to  a  claimant  and the local economy. Approval of the
 30        accomplished transfer through the procedure  set  forth  in  this  section
 31        avoids  the  harsh economic impacts that would result from a denial of the
 32        claim.
 33        (c)  The legislature further finds and declares that examination of  these
 34        changes  by  the  director through the procedures of section 42-222, Idaho
 35        Code, would be impractical and unduly burdensome. The more limited  exami-
 36        nation  of  these changes provided for in this section, constitutes a rea-
 37        sonable procedure for an expeditious review by the director while ensuring
 38        that the changes do not injure other existing water rights  or  constitute
 39        an enlargement of use of the original right.
 40        (2)  Any  change of place of use, point of diversion, nature or purpose of
 41    use or period of use of a water right by any person entitled to use  of  water
 42    or  owning  any land to which water has been made appurtenant either by decree


  1    of the court or under the provisions of the constitution and statutes of  this
  2    state, prior to November 19, 1987, the date of commencement of the Snake River
  3    basin adjudication, and prior to January 1, 2006, for the northern Idaho adju-
  4    dications  authorized  by  section 42-1406B, Idaho Code, may be claimed in the
  5    applicable a general adjudication even though the person has not complied with
  6    sections 42-108 and 42-222, Idaho Code, provided no other water rights  exist-
  7    ing on the date of the change were injured and the change did not result in an
  8    enlargement  of  the  original  right. Except for the  consent requirements of
  9    section 42-108, Idaho Code, all requirements of sections  42-108  and  42-222,
 10    Idaho Code, are hereby waived in accordance with the following procedures:
 11        (a)  If  an objection is filed to a recommendation for accomplished change
 12        of place of use, point of diversion, nature or purpose of use or period of
 13        use, the district court shall remand the water right to the  director  for
 14        further  hearing  to  determine  whether  the change injured a water right
 15        existing on the date of the change or constituted an  enlargement  of  the
 16        original  right. After a hearing, the director shall submit a supplemental
 17        report to the district court setting forth his findings  and  conclusions.
 18        If  the  claimant or any person who filed an objection to the accomplished
 19        transfer is aggrieved by  the  director's  determination,  they  may  seek
 20        review  before the district court. If the change is disallowed, the claim-
 21        ant shall be entitled to resume use of the original water right,  provided
 22        such  resumption  of use will not cause injury or can be mitigated to pre-
 23        vent injury to existing water rights. The unapproved change shall  not  be
 24        deemed a forfeiture or abandonment of the original water right.
 25        (b)  This section is not applicable to any claim based upon an enlargement
 26        of use.

 27        SECTION  3.  An  emergency  existing  therefor,  which emergency is hereby
 28    declared to exist, this act shall be in full force and effect on and after its
 29    passage and approval, and retroactively to July 1, 2006.

Statement of Purpose / Fiscal Impact

                       STATEMENT OF PURPOSE

                            RS 17468

This RS would repeal section 42-1406B Idaho Code relating to
northern Idaho water rights adjudication and amend section 42-
1425 Idaho code.  The citizens in a majority of the land area
affected by the proposed adjudication have expressed opposition
to the plan.  By repealing the enacting legislation, a closer
look at the goals and objectives to be achieved by adjudicating
the northern basins can be undertaken with the participation of
those affected by such an adjudication.

                          FISCAL IMPACT

*Passage of this proposed repeal would save the state of Idaho _
millions of dollars in known costs and potentially tens of
millions of dollars in unknown expenses resulting from years of
court costs and claims.

Name: Sen. Joyce Broadsword 
Phone: 208-332-1000
Rep. Dick Harwood
Rep. Mary Lou Shepherd

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE/FISCAL NOTE                        S 1279