Under the agreement, Nevada received more "unallocated" water than did Utah, as well as three times as much "reserve" water — that is water that no one knows exists beyond what's put down on paper.
State officials insisted an agreement that would protect existing water users in Utah and mitigate environmental impacts to sensitive or endangered species is better than no agreement at all — which Nevada doesn't need to proceed with its efforts to get the water from four of the five basins.
The agreement at this point remains in limbo because of a Nevada Supreme Court decision that told the state water engineer to restart the hearing process on water right applications filed by the water authority.
Mark Ward, with the Utah Association of Counties, told the BLM hearing officer Thursday night that absent the agreement, any pipeline route that contemplates going into Snake Valley flagrantly violates a Congressional act that dictates a water sharing agreement must be reached in a shared basin.
"It just ain't legal."
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