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Do new leases violate Water Agreement?

March 29, 2014

Scott Kemp

Recent changes in the language of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power grazing leases have raised concern among Owens Valley ranchers. In response, Inyo County Water Department Director Bob Harrington notified Aqueduct Manager Jim Yannotta where that language conflicts with the Inyo-L.A. Long Term Water Agreement.
The reaction to the lease revisions, which appear to give LADWP the sole right to determine water allotments less than what was defined in the LTWA and limit stock water during the April to September irrigation season, ranged from concern to confusion. It’s raised the question as to whether the writer of the new document was familiar with concepts like “stock water.”
According to LADWP Public Information Officer Chris Plakos, Yannotta is reviewing the letter he received Friday, March 21 and will get back to Harrington within the next week or so. Yannotta and LADWP Water Systems Manager Marty Adams have been meeting with area cattlemen this past week.
Two cattlemen who returned The Inyo Register’s phone calls both assumed that the discrepancies between the leases and the LTWA would be resolved.

Read the full story in the Saturday, March 29, 2014 edition of The Inyo Register.

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