Irrigation Rights In WyomingJan 252012
We often get asked about water rights or irrigation rights in Wyoming: In the State of Wyoming, all water is owned by the state and has been adjudicated through a priority system dating back to territorial dates to certain lands.
Adjudicated Water Rights In Wyoming
If a property has adjudicated water rights attached to the legal description, those water rights stay with the land when it is sold. Wyoming is a high desert, semi-arid climate with average rainfall being 6 to 10 inches per year. Supplemental water is needed to grow crops or a landscaped yard.
Irrigation rights on smaller parcels are usually part of a larger water right and are generally shared with neighboring smaller parcels. In many cases, there are irrigation districts that cover a larger area and oversee the water rights in that district.
Wyoming Ditch Rights
There is a yearly charge for the delivery of water. That assessment covers the maintenance of the canals and ditches in that district. Fees vary from district to district. Many times in a neighborhood with small parcels, there will be an association with a water master. For more detailed information, see this pdf on irrigation in Wyoming.
Water is gold in Wyoming. From the fertile ground, lush crops can be produced.
Drilling A Well In Wyoming
If you are looking at land for sale that does not have irrigation or just looking for a home site, you most likely will be drilling a well. This is done by obtaining a permit from the State Engineer’s office. The cost is $50 for the application.
When the well is complete and hooked up to a power source, a Completion Statement is filled out and sent into the State Engineer’s office. They will then adjudicate the water right to that property and assign a number. A domestic well allows for watering of one acre around the home site.
For additional information on water rights in the State of Wyoming, contact the State Engineer’s Office, http://seo.state.wy.us/index.aspx
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