State Land Commissioner Sues State Engineer Over Temporary Water Permits

NEW MEXICO’S LAND COMMISSIONER IS SUING THE STATE ENGINEER OVER WASTED WATER. DARRELL MOODY HAS THE DETAILS…

STATE LAND COMMISSIONER AUBREY DUNN WANTS TO PREVENT THE STATE ENGINEER FROM ISSUING WHAT HE CALLS “UNLAWFUL” TEMPORARY WATER WELL PERMITS.
IN THE LAWSUIT, DUNN ALLEGES THE PERMITS ALLOW PERMITTEES TO USE TWO TO THREE TIMES MORE WATER THAN THE THREE-ACRE-FEET-PER-YEAR ALLOWED UNDER A TEMPORARY USE PERMIT…WHICH EQUATES TO NEARLY A MILLION GALLONS OF WATER. DUNN SAYS THE STATE ENGINEER HAS BEEN CHARGING A 15-DOLLAR FILING FEE FOR A PERMIT ALLOWING NINE ACRE FEET OF WATER FROM EACH WELL…WHICH BY HIS CALCULATION…WOULD SELL FOR ABOUT 143-THOUSAND DOLLARS.