Colorado Water Stewardship Project Dec Updates

CWC Board Adopts Resolution

The Colorado Water Congress Board unanimously adopted a resolution opposing a public trust doctrine at its December 6th meeting. 

The resolution declared:
A public trust doctrine is unwise, unnecessary, disruptive to the fair and responsible allocation and stewardship of Colorado’s scarce water resources, and an unwarranted taking of vested property interests. --December 6, 2013
The resolution cites the risks to agricultural users and major concerns for Colorado’s economic stability. The Board also opposed the doctrine because it would increase uncertainty in the ownership and right to use water, and shift control from the local water providers to the courts in the form of litigation.
Board Chairman Regan Waskom said the Colorado Water Congress will strongly encourage its membership to adopt similar resolutions. “It is important that the water community be absolutely clear that the public trust doctrine, in whatever form it might be offered, would be a disaster for Colorado citizens and for good water management.”

View the Colorado Water Congress Resolution on a Public Trust Doctrine HERE.

Agreed: Conservation & Storage Needed

Colorado voters support conservation, but not as the sole solution to water supply shortfalls. They believe that storage is also needed. When asked in a recent poll conducted for the Colorado Water Stewardship Project whether storage was needed to solve water shortages or if conservation alone was enough, 82 percent opted for storage and conservation together.
Question: Do you agree or disagree with the next statement. Colorado water providers have helped businesses and city residents to reduce water usage by about 20 percent during the last decade and they are doing more. But, water conservation alone can’t solve our water shortages. We need water storage projects. Please tell me if you strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree or strongly disagree with the statement.
A statewide poll by Ciruli Associates shows Coloradans highly value water storage and understand that it is critical to the economy, recreation and quality of life throughout the state. But, they also know that water is in short supply.

Webinar: Legal Aspects of a Public Trust

The CWSP Webinar series continued with Attorney Steve Leonhardt presenting "Legal Aspects of a Public Trust & Colorado's Ballot Process"

The November 18th webinar described the rules of the initiative process, the legal origin of the public trust doctrine and its western U.S. applications, and the history of the initiative in Colorado, appearing first in 1992. 

The presentation closed with a description of the state’s statute governing public advocacy related to ballot issues in Colorado.


Making the Budget

The Colorado Water Stewardship Project was created to prepare the state’s water community if a Public Trust or other radical water ballot initiative is proposed. The process of preparation also serves as a deterrent by making clear the water community has done its research, developed its communication materials and digital platforms and will move rapidly to deal with issues if they arise.
The budget goal for a two-year program was established at $325,000. Approximately $180,000 has been collected with an additional $80,000 pledged from a total of 40 sponsors. The remaining budget will be solicited in 2014 from associations, groups and water providers that support the project but have not yet made a contribution.
The solicitation will go out in January 2014.

Issue II

December 2013

Project Information

Colorado Water Congress
1580 Logan St., Ste 700
Denver, CO 80203

Quick Links


Nov. 18, 2013
Legal Aspects of a Public Trust & CO's Ballot Process
with Attorney Steve Leonhardt
Steve Leonhardt presents the Nov. CWSP educational Webinar.
Oct. 16, 2013
Public Perception of the Public Trust Doctrine
with Floyd Ciruli
Floyd Ciruli presents, "Public Perception of the Public Trust Doctrine," the first in a series of monthly educational webinars.

Up Next

- CWSP Website Coming Soon: Check your e-mail
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