Friday, February 5, 2016

More 2016 Water Bills and Resolutions

Since the 2016 legislative session began, several more water bills have been introduced. These new bills are summarized below.

H.B. 218 - Utah Revised Nonprofit Corporation Act
S.B. 116 - Water Law - Nonprofit Corporation Amendments
Rep. Kay McIff (R-Richfield) and Sen. Curtis Bramble (R-Provo) are running identical bills with House Bill 218 and Senate Bill 116. The bills seek to amend two provisions of the Utah Revised Nonprofit Corporation Act. First, the bills seek to exempt shares of stock in water companies from the general rule in the Act that memberships in nonprofit corporations may not be transferred. This change is primarily in response to the Utah Supreme Court's decision in the Southam v. South Despain Ditch Co. case from 2014. Second, the bills seek to clarify that shareholders in water companies have an undivided interest in the property and water rights of the company and that they are entitled to the use of water and right to change the use of water under the Utah water code.
You can read the full text of the bills, as introduced, by clicking here and here.

H.B. 222 - Nonuse Application Amendments
Rep. Timothy Hawkes (R-Centerville) is sponsoring House Bill 222, which seeks to amend Utah's statute regarding nonuse applications. The bill proposes to insert language into the statute to provide (1) that one or more successive overlapping change applications do not protect a water right that is already subject to forfeiture due to nonuse, and (2) that the approval of one or more nonuse applications does not constitute beneficial use of the water for purposes of calculating the 15-year period during which a forfeiture action must be brought.
You can read the full text of the bill, as introduced, by clicking here.

H.B. 257 - Water Funding Revisions
Rep. Lee Perry (R-Perry) has introduced House Bill 257, which seeks to send some of the State sales tax to the Water Infrastructure Restricted Account. This bill is the same as S.B. 80, which you can read about by clicking here.
You can read the full text of the bill, as introduced, by clicking here.

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