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Aug 17, 2016: Legislative Committee Welcomes Public Comment on Proposed Changes to Montana Water Laws

Montana’s Water Policy Interim Committee (WPIC) will hold its next meeting August 29-30 at the Capitol in Helena – and it's a critical time for water rights holders to become engaged. Even if you belong to a group represented by a lobbyist, now is the time to become better informed and let the Legislature know what you think and how their decisions impact Montana water users.

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July 6, 2016: Plan B on Banning Fracking: Stop the Flow of Water to Oil and Gas

The Colorado Supreme Court’s ruling on May 2nd that struck down bans and moratoriums on fracking  has assured two things: one, a fight about fracking at the ballot box, and two, be on the lookout for other creative production-halting threats. Where are oil and gas companies getting their water from?  Is it from a secured, legal and reliable source that know won’t be changing? 

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June 23, 2016: Hey Oil and Gas Companies, Are You In Possession of Illegal Water?

What if an oil and gas operator purchases water knowing that the seller deceptively purchased it for agricultural use?  Does it make a difference if the operator is unaware of any deception, but knows that the water isn’t approved for industrial use?  Water Sage tackles the question of stolen water in Colorado.

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May 19, 2016: Where Are My Water Rights?

You own a home with a well, some acreage with a spring-fed pond or a large agricultural operation with livestock and acres of irrigated hay. You are positive you own water rights, but a search of the state website does not list any water rights in your name or the ranch name. Does this mean you don’t own any rights? Why aren‘t your water rights listed in the state database?

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Apr 23, 2016: California’s Water Crisis: Could Texas Be Next?

Texas is facing many of the same challenges as California: drought, population growth, and groundwater depletion. California is in a state of crisis. And there is one aspect of California’s water administration that Texas shares: a patchwork approach to management. How can Texas avoid the same fate?

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Apr 6, 2017: Times Have Changed – The Evolution of Montana’s Water Adjudication Process

Learn how the Montana water rights adjudication started as a local, personalized process using field investigation and personal interviews, but evolved into a procedure involving a centralized system which now relies on document review, Claims Examination Rules and an examination manual spanning over 600 pages.

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Mar 1, 2016: Drops in the Bucket?

Rain barrels are in the news again in Colorado, the only state in the US where collection of rainwater is illegal. Many react with a question: why is rainwater capture, a strategy that seems aligned with a water conservation ethic, still illegal in a dry state that needs to conserve water? Others answer just as strongly that the longstanding and tightly managed “prior appropriation” system of Western water rights must be protected. What are some of the finer points overlooked in this debate?

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Feb 11, 2016: Grab a Paddle: Montana Water Policy Has Challenging Rapids Ahead

Here at Water Sage, we wade into all things water, especially in Montana, where water leaders meet policy challenges head on. Through our upcoming blog series on state legislative issues we’ll help you navigate Montana’s water policy changes, so you can participate in shaping that policy. Stay in touch with our team if you have questions  – we love to help spur conversations about water resources!

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Jan 11, 2016: MT Irrigators: Pivot Conversions Require Water Right Changes

Converting flood irrigation to pivots and other sprinkler methods is a common upgrade on ranch and farm properties. While the conversions tend to lead to more efficient water use in agriculture, they are not as simple as just installing a pivot and operating it. In this post, Nancy delves into the permitting and water right changes that are required to convert to more efficient means of irrigation.

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Dec 28, 2015: Homeowners Beware: 5 Things You Need To Know Before Buying Property in Texas

House Bill 1221, recently signed into Texas law, requires sellers of residential real estate to disclose whether any part of a property is in a groundwater conservation district (GCD) or subsidence district. The law affects all transfers taking place January 1, 2016 or later. By not investigating this for yourself, you could be in for an unwelcome surprise after you close on a property.
 

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UPCOMING EVENTS

  • We will be at Western Landowners Alliance Board Meeting and Mitigation Workshop in Missoula, MT on Aug 2-4.
  • We will be at Colorado Water Congress in Steamboat Springs, CO on August 22-24.
  • We will be at the Montana/Idaho REALTORS Joint Annual Business Convention in Big Sky, MT on September 13-14.
  • We will be at the Montana Association of Counties Annual Conference in Bozeman, MT on September 17-21.
  • We will be at the Montana League of Cities & Towns Annual Conference in Great Falls, MT on September 27-29.
  • We will be at the Montana American Water Resources Association in Helena, MT on October 19-20.
  • We will be at the South Platte Forum in Loveland, CO on October 25-26.
  • We will be speaking at the 2017 AWRA Annual Conference in Portland, OR on November 5-9.
  • We will be at the Montana Association of Conservation Districts Annual Conference in Bozeman, MT on November 12-14.
  • We will be at the ACWA 2017 Fall Conference & Exhibition in Anaheim, CA on November 28 - December 1.

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