The book-like publication pictured above is the Grass Valley French Ditch Company application to change a water right to a marketing purpose of use. I filed this application today. This change application has consumed much of the last few months and has been in development for nearly two years. From a market efficiency perspective, this is not good. What’s even more scary is filing the application constitutes the beginning of the change process– in many ways. This project must still survive the administrative review process and public noticing. Once again, this highlights an obvious challenge the water market faces. If it’s quick, it’s not a water deal.
What is good is this represents the first ever change to water marketing in the state of Montana. Thanks to a water marketing bill passed by the 2011 legislature, the dream of water marketing in Montana is becoming a reality. This novel change for Montana will benefit both the Ditch Company and the public. If granted, this requested change would allow the company to protect its agricultural shareholders within the company, help finance maintenance and operations, increase overall efficiency, and offer a source of water for future mitigation. Additional benefits of this project design include aquifer recharge and a perpetual water supply for a neighboring wetland complex.
This is good.
This is good for Montana and this is good for water markets.