SENATE BILL 270
51st legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - second session, 2014
RELATING TO WATER; AMENDING A SECTION OF CHAPTER 72 NMSA 1978 TO PROVIDE FOR RULES CONSISTENT WITH ARTICLE 16 OF THE CONSTITUTION OF NEW MEXICO AND THE DOCTRINE OF PRIOR APPROPRIATION.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. Section 72-2-9.1 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 2003, Chapter 63, Section 1) is amended to read:
"72-2-9.1. PRIORITY ADMINISTRATION--EXPEDITED WATER MARKETING AND LEASING--STATE ENGINEER.--
A. The legislature recognizes that the adjudication process is slow, the need for water administration is urgent, compliance with interstate compacts is imperative and the state engineer has authority to administer water allocations in accordance with the water right priorities recorded with or declared or otherwise available to the state engineer.
B. The state engineer shall adopt rules for priority administration to ensure that authority is exercised:
(1) so as not to interfere with a future or pending adjudication;
(2) so as to create no impairment of water rights, other than what is required to enforce [priorities] Article 16 of the constitution of New Mexico and the doctrine of prior appropriation; and
(3) so as to create no increased depletions.
C. The state engineer shall adopt rules based on the appropriate hydrologic models to promote expedited marketing and leasing of water in those areas affected by priority administration. The rules shall be consistent with Article 16 of the constitution of New Mexico and the doctrine of prior appropriation and the rights, remedies and criteria established by law for proceedings for water use leasing and for changes in point of diversion, place of use and purpose of use of water rights. The rules shall not apply to acequias or community ditches or to water rights served by an acequia or community ditch. D. Nothing in this section shall affect the
partial final decree and settlement agreement as may be
entered in the Carlsbad irrigation district project offer
phase of State of New Mexico ex rel. State Engineer v. Lewis,
et al., Nos. 20294 and 22600 (N.M. 5th Jud. Dist.)."
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