U.S., Mexico close to Colorado River water use pact

By Ken Ritter

Associated Press

Published: Friday, Nov. 9 2012 2:27 p.m. MST

Colorado River below the Hoover Dam, Tuesday, April 10, 2012.

Winston Armani

Enlarge photo»

LAS VEGAS — Government leaders in the United States and Mexico are close to signing a pact to add areas south of the border to Colorado River water sharing agreements involving seven Western U.S. states.

U.S. Bureau of Reclamation officials said Friday that final documents are circulating among the 15 water agencies and state officials in Nevada, Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports the Southern Nevada Water Authority and Colorado River Commission of Nevada will consider it next week.

The agreement would link Mexican and U.S. water allocations during shortages that the documents dub "low reservoir conditions."

And for the first time it would let Mexico store water in U.S. reservoirs, including Lake Mead.

A signing ceremony is tentatively scheduled later this month.

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