Utah HB 187 Defeated Again


Bryan Gregson of Utah Water Guardians sent me a message on 3/9 that the Utah House had again defeated HB 187. HB 187 was an attempt by a some wealthy landowners, ranchers and developers to re-privatize Utah public water access. HB 187 was in direct opposition to a unanimous Utah Supreme Court decision allowing citizens access to public water flowing over private land. Unfortunately, there were abuses and the landowners were understandably upset. So they tried to sneak through a bill in their favor.

The bill was defeated once several weeks ago 41 – 34. Then HB 187 resurfaced on reconsideration. After (3) substitute Bills, (20) amendments, the Bill failed in the House, on a 43-31 vote, March 9, 2009. This is 2 more votes against than the first time. Thanks to tireless efforts contacting their representatives, the Governor and other interested parties, this Bill may stay dead this time.

But my experience with people that have power and money is they don’t like to loose. This subject will be back again. But maybe in the mean time a meaningful dialog can be established between the parties to get a better solution than legislating everything to death.

I suggested to Bryan that he should help set up a hot line for reporting abuses of landowners property similar to the poaching hot line here in Colorado.

Tight Lines and Good Fishing,
Marshall, Editor
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