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Application Of State Water Law To Federal Agencies

Concerning limits that the basic tenets of Colorado water law place on the ability of certain federal agencies to impose conditions on a water right owner in exchange for permission to use federal land.
2016 Regular Session
Bill Summary

The act states basic tenets of Colorado water law concerning water as a transferable property right and prohibits the state and division engineers from enforcing or administering any United States forest service or federal bureau of land management effort that:
  • Requires a full or partial transfer of title to a water right to the United States forest service or the federal bureau of land management;
  • Restricts the use or alienability of the water right as a condition to a right-of-way, special use permit, or other authorization to use federally owned land; or
  • Requires a third party that supplies water to a federal special use permit holder to supply the water for a set period of time or in a set amount.

The act specifies that it does not impact the state engineer's or a division engineer's authority to enforce and administer the terms and conditions of a water court decree or other judicial decree and that it does not grant, confirm, deny, or impact any legal authority of the federal government to impose bypass flow requirements in connection with a special use permit or other authorization.

(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)


Became Law


Bill Text

  • All Versions (7 )
    Date Bill Type Documents
    04/21/2016 Signed Act PDF
    04/11/2016 Final Act PDF
    04/01/2016 Rerevised PDF
    03/31/2016 Revised PDF
    03/29/2016 Reengrossed PDF
    03/28/2016 Engrossed PDF
    01/20/2016 Introduced PDF

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details