Action allows plan to move forward to protect Lake Mead from dropping to critical levels
PHOENIX (Dec. 7, 2018) ‒ At its Dec. 6 board meeting, the Central Arizona Water Conservation District (CAWCD) took action that provides a clear path forward for the interstate (Lower Colorado River Basin) and intrastate (Arizona) drought contingency plans. This action allows Arizona to attend next week’s Colorado River Water Users Association (CRWUA) meeting with the AZDCP Implementation Plan in hand and sets the stage for the Arizona legislature to consider action when it reconvenes in early 2019.
The CAWCD board took the following actions:
- Approved the Lower Basin Drought Contingency Plan and directed the CAWCD board president to execute the appropriate agreements
- Supported key elements of the AZDCP Implementation Plan presented at the Nov. 29 AZDCP Steering Committee meeting
“After a comprehensive and transparent process, I’m proud to say the board has taken these actions today,” says Lisa Atkins, CAWCD board president. “This plan essentially ‘shares the pain’ amongst those who must bear the brunt of shortage. This reflects how Arizonans typically work together to address water challenges and opportunities – through a collaborative process involving many parties and a tremendous amount of complexity and flexibility. This was no small feat and involved literally hundreds – if not thousands – of hours on the part of many, including the board and our own Central Arizona Project staff, the Arizona Department of Water Resources and countless stakeholder groups. To all those involved, we extend our thanks.”
Here’s the exact language approved by the CAWCD board:
- Approve the Lower Basin DCP Agreement and the Companion Agreement and to authorize the Board President or her designee to execute the appropriate agreements, provided those documents protect the board’s capacity to enforce all parties’ obligations under the DCP in court if necessary.
- Support the key provisions of the AZDCP Implementation Plan presented at the Nov.29th Steering Committee meeting, recognizing the need for additional discussions to address remaining issues, including certainty for the CAP Ag Pool and the Developer Pool, and subject to approval by the Board of agreements necessary to implement CAWCD’s commitments to the AZ DCP Implementation Plan and consistent with the Board’s action taken at the November 15, 2018 special Board meeting.
To learn more about Arizona’s Drought Contingency Planning process, visit CAP’s website. Further details will continue to be shared there regarding next steps.