2011 Application and Permitting Options
The 2011 drought, with its extraordinarily low winter moisture and on-going nature, resulted in many irrigators having insufficient remaining allocation to complete irrigation of their crops. Two options for water users needing additional pumping authorization were developed and are summarized below. These options were intended to prevent crop failure while insuring the additional pumping will not worsen aquifer declines.
5-year Flex Account
- As provided by K.S.A. 82a-736 (Multi-year flex accounts) originally authorized in 2001, this permit allows holders of existing water rights the flexibility to exceed their authorized quantity of the water right.
- Over the five year period, the water right holder operates under a term permit; the underlying water right is unaffected. At the end of the period, the water right reverts to its original conditions.
- Allows water right holders to spread the allocation over a 5 year period.
- The five-year allocation is based on five times the average annual quantity actually used from 2000 through 2009, as reported to DWR by the water right holder on the annual water use reports.
- The program requires a 10 percent conservation factor to reduce impact on the aquifer and neighboring water right holders.
- Available within an Intensive Groundwater Use Control Area (IGUCA) provided approval would not be inconsistent with the provisions of the IGUCA.
- This option is available statewide and is an ongoing program.
- Authorized by K.S.A. 82a-736 as amended by this year’s Legislature .
- DWR will be proposing further changes to the multi-year flex account program during the 2012 legislative session.
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- The Drought Emergency Term Permit filing deadline expired on December 31, 2011.
- The Division of Water Resources received over 2200 applications for this program.
- Available for water right holders in agricultural drought disaster declaration areas requested by the Governor and designated by the USDA.
- This program is a one-time only option for overages in 2011. Allows holders of existing permits or water rights the flexibility to borrow a portion of next year’s authorized quantity in order to complete the 2011 growing season to save their current crop.
- Qualifying counties include Allen, Anderson, Barber, Barton, Bourbon, Butler, Chase, Chautauqua, Cherokee, Clark, Coffey, Comanche, Cowley, Crawford, Edwards, Elk, Ellis, Ellsworth, Finney, Ford, Gove, Graham, Grant, Gray, Greeley, Greenwood, Hamilton, Harper, Harvey, Haskell, Hodgeman, Kearny, Kingman, Kiowa, Labette, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Logan, Lyon, Marion, McPherson, Meade, Montgomery, Morton, Neosho, Ness, Norton, Pawnee, Phillips, Pratt, Reno, Rice, Rush, Russell, Sedgwick, Scott, Seward, Sheridan, Sherman, Stafford, Stanton, Stevens, Sumner, Thomas, Trego, Wallace, Wichita, Wilson, and Woodson counties.
- Drought Emergency Term Permits were made available in the McPherson and Pawnee Intensive Groundwater Use Control Areas (IGUCAs), on July 29, 2011, and the Arkansas River IGUCA on August 15, 2011.
- The term permit allocation and application fee will be based on the sum of the quantity authorized for 2011 and 2012.
- Separate term applications are required for each point of diversion and base water right.
- At least one water right owner or a duly authorized agent must sign the application.
- Signatures are required at two places on the application form which includes the proof of access statement.
- Participants will agree to deduct their 2011 overage from what they may pump in 2012.
- Drought Term Permit Applications must be filed before exceeding the authorized annual quantity in 2011.
- Water rights currently under other enforcement sanctions for 2011 are not eligible for this program.
- Full written procedural guideline is available for download .
DWR and KSU Research and Extension partnered to host four educational meetings on November 15 and 16, for water right holders who had questions about water rights in drought and possible ways to manage next year’s water supply.
KDA Press Releases
- Department of Agriculture Offers Options for Water Use in Drought - June 30, 2011
- Department of Agriculture Extends Water Use Options to Additional Counties - July 7, 2011
- Additional Counties, IGUCAs Eligible for DWR Drought Term Permit - July 29, 2011
- Arkansas River IGUCA Eligible for DWR Drought Term Permit - August 15, 2011
- KDA, K-State Host Educational Meetings on Water Use with Limited Supplies - October 21, 2011
- Drought Emergency Term Permit filing deadline approaching - December 20, 2011
- 2011 Drought Options Fact Sheet - Revised September 6, 2011
Climate and Water Availability Data
Kansas Water Office Drought Website
National Integrated Drought Information System
U.S. Drought Monitor
National Weather Service (home page)
National Weather Service (River Observations and Forecasts)
National Weather Service (Climate Prediction Center)
National Weather Service (Soil Moisture)
U.S. Geological Survey (Kansas Water Science Center)
Kansas Geological Survey
K-State Research and Extension (Weather Data Library)
USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service - Kansas Crop Progress and Condition Report