Tipton bill on states’ water rights clears House

A measure that would require federal agencies to observe state water laws won approval from the U.S,. House and now awaits Senate action as part of a package of water-related bills.

The Water Rights Protection Act by U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Colo., was included in H.R. 23, the Gaining Responsibility on Water Act, which passed Wednesday on a 230-190 vote.

A previous version of the measure passed the House only to languish in the Senate without getting a vote.

Tipton introduced the first version of the measure in response to a requirement that the new owners of Powderhorn Mountain Resort surrender their water rights in order to obtain a permit to operate the ski resort on federal land.

The Water Rights Protection Act would prohibit any federal agency from requiring the transfer of privately held water rights as a permit condition.

U.S. Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., is carrying the Water Rights Protection Act in the Senate.


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