IRRIGATION AND DRAINAGE — WATER RIGHTS AND RECLAMATION
ADJUDICATION OF WATER RIGHTS
42-1406B. Northern Idaho water rights adjudications — Commencement. (1) Effective management of the waters of northern Idaho requires that a comprehensive determination of the nature, extent and priority of the rights of users of surface and ground water be determined. Therefore, the director of the department of water resources is authorized to petition the district court to commence adjudications within the terms of the McCarran amendment, 43 U.S.C. section 666, of the water rights from surface water and ground water sources in northern Idaho through initiation of three (3) proceedings, provided that each petition includes a request for the deferral of the adjudication of domestic and stock water rights as defined by subsections (4) and (11) of section 42-1401A, Idaho Code, and a request that a commencement order be issued only if the court determines it is possible to defer the adjudication of domestic and stock water rights as defined by subsections (4) and (11) of section 42-1401A, Idaho Code, within the terms of the McCarran amendment. Separate petitions shall be filed for water rights adjudications for each of the following river basins, and related ground water sources whether or not hydraulically connected to a surface water source, within Idaho: the Coeur d’Alene-Spokane river basin, the Palouse river basin, and the Clark Fork-Pend Oreille river basins, which do not include basin 98. The filing of each petition shall be contingent on legislative funding approval. Each petition shall describe the boundaries of the water source or water sources to be adjudicated.
(2) The adjudication shall be brought in any district court in which any part of the water source is located or before a court of special jurisdiction for water right adjudications. Unless otherwise ordered by the supreme court, special jurisdiction for the water rights general adjudications authorized by this section shall reside in the Snake River Basin Adjudication district court of the fifth judicial district of the state of Idaho, in and for the county of Twin Falls. The clerk of the district court in which the petition is filed shall send to the supreme court a true and certified copy of the petition. The supreme court, by order, shall assign the judge to preside over the general adjudication. Venue of the general adjudication shall be determined by order or rule of the supreme court and venue of hearings under the general adjudication shall be determined by order of the presiding judge.
(3) Upon issuance of an order by the district court which authorizes the director to commence an investigation and determination of the various water rights to be adjudicated from the water source or water sources, and which defines the boundaries of the source or sources within the state to be adjudicated, the director of the department of water resources shall proceed in the manner provided under the provisions of chapter 14, title 42, Idaho Code, to the extent not inconsistent with the provisions of this section.
[42-1406B, added 2006, ch. 222, sec. 1, p. 661; am. 2008, ch. 149, sec. 1, p. 434; am. 2008, ch. 159, sec. 1, p. 456.]