Monday, January 20, 2014

2014 Legislative Preview: Canal Safety Act

Senator Gene Davis will introduce Senate Bill 114 (SB 114), entitled "Canal Safety Act."  The bill seeks to enact several new statutes to govern canal safety issues.  The bill begins by defining a canal as a water conveyance system that conveys a flow of more than 10 cfs of water.  The bill would require all canal owners to conduct an assessment of the condition of each canal before January 1, 2015, and at least once every five years thereafter.  The canal owner must determine whether each section of the canal is high risk, medium risk, or low risk; determine if any repairs or improvements are necessary to reduce the risk of canal failure; and report the findings to the Utah Division of Water Rights.  The Division would then maintain a "canal action list" to include all canals that are high risk and/or require repairs or improvements.  If a canal is on the canal action list, the canal owner must prepare a remediation plan, which must be approved by the Division of Water Rights and the Division of Water Resources.  The canal owner cannot receive state funding for a project related to the canal unless they have an approved remediation plan.

To read the full text of the bill, as introduced, click here.

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