Summary: H.R.5118 — 97th Congress (1981-1982)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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House agreed to Senate amendment with amendment (05/12/1982)

(House agreed to Senate amendment with amendments)

Southern Arizona Water Rights Settlement Act of 1982 - Directs the Secretary of the Interior to deliver water supplies to the Papago Tribe of Arizona and its members in settlement of tribal and individual water rights claims in portions of the Papago reservations.

Directs the Secretary, (acting through the Bureau of Reclamation) as soon as possible but not later than ten years after enactment of this Act, and if the Tribe has agreed to specified conditions, to: (1) deliver, annually, specified amounts of water suitable for agricultural use from the main project works of the Central Arizona Project (CAP) to the San Xavier Reservation and to the Schuk Toak District of the Sells Papago Reservation; (2) construct facilities to convey and distribute such water; and (3) establish a water management plan for such areas.

Directs the Secretary, upon request by the Tribe, to study the availability and suitability of water resources within the Sells Papago Reservation but outside the Tucson Active Management Area or the Upper Santa Cruz Basin.

Directs the Secretary, in cooperation with the Secretary of Energy or the appropriate agency or officials, to carry out a study to determine: (1) energy availability and requirements resulting from enactment of this Act; and (2) feasibility of constructing a solar power or other alternative energy producing facility to meet such requirements.

Declares that the Tribe shall have the right to withdraw ground water from beneath the San Xavier Reservation and the Schuk Toak District of the Sells Papago Reservation, subject to specified limitations.

Declares that nothing in this Act shall diminish or abrogate any obligations of the Secretary to the Papago Tribe under the December 11, 1980, CAP water delivery contract.

Requires that specified deliveries of water under this Act be in such amounts and according to such terms and conditions as are set forth in the December 11, 1980, agreement, except as otherwise provided in this Act.

Directs the Secretary, when unable to deliver such amounts of water from the main project works of the CAP, to: (1) acquire and deliver an equivalent quantity of water from specified alternative supplies and sources; or (2) pay damages in an amount equal to the actual replacement costs (where a delivery system has not been completed within ten years after enactment of this Act) or the value of such quantities of water as are not acquired and delivered (where the delivery system is completed).

Requires the owner's consent to the Secretary's acquisition of land, water rights, contract rights, or reclaimed water. Sets forth conditions for acquisitions by the Secretary. Requires that any private lands acquired have a recent history of capacity to receive substantially all of the water right use and that preference in acquisition be given to lands upon which water has recently been put to beneficial use. Declares that nothing in this title shall authorize the Secretary to acquire or disturb the water rights of any Indian tribe, band, group, or community.

Directs the Secretary (acting through the Bureau of Reclamation), in meeting such water delivery obligations, to: (1) design, construct, operate, maintain, and replace appropriate facilities; and (2) deliver the water to suitable boundary points agreed to by the Tribe. Authorizes the appropriation of a sum equal to that portion of the total costs of phase B of the Tucson Aqueduct of the Central Arizona Project allocable to the construction of facilities for such water delivery.

Authorizes the Secretary, in facilitating water delivery under this Act, to: (1) enter into contracts for the exchange of water or for the use of water delivery facilities; and (2) use facilities constructed with Federal funds.

Sets forth requirements concerning the purchase and delivery of reclaimed water or alternative water supplies by the Secretary, in accordance with a specified agreement and in specified amounts, to the San Xavier Reservation and to the Schuk Toak District of the Sells Papago Reservation.

Prohibits the Secretary from constructing a separate delivery system to deliver such reclaimed water.

Requires the Secretary to carry out specified water delivery obligations only if the Tribe agrees to: (1) certain limitations on the pumping of ground water; and (2) compliance with the water management plan. Requires the Secretary to carry out specified distribution systems obligations only if the Tribe agrees to: (1) subjugate the land; and (2) assume responsibility for the systems. Sets forth the rights of the Tribe with respect to the use of water supplies under this Act. Requires that the proceeds from any sale, exchange, or disposition of water by the Tribe be used for social or economic programs which benefit the Tribe. Declares that nothing in specified provisions of this Act shall be construed to establish whether or not reserved water may be put to use, or sold for use, off of any reservation to which reserved water rights attach.

Requires the Secretary to carry out specified water delivery obligations under this Act only if, within one year of the enactment of this Act: (1) the city of Tucson, the Secretary, and the Tribe agree that the city will make available and the Secretary will purchase a specified quantity of reclaimed water to be delivered annually to the Tribe; (2) the Tribe agrees to file a stipulation for voluntary dismissal with prejudice of a specified district court suit and the suit is dismissed within an unspecified period of time; and (3) the Tribe executes a waiver and release of all of its claims concerning water rights within specified areas against the United States, the State of Arizona and its agencies and local governments, or any other person, corporation or municipal corporation arising under U.S. or Arizona law.

Provides that such waiver and release shall not take effect until a trust fund has been established and the full amount authorized to be appropriated to such trust fund under this Act has been appropriated by the Congress.

Declares that the settlement under this Act fully satisfies all claims of water rights or injuries to water rights of all individual members of the Papago Tribe with a legal interest in specified lands. Provides that any entitlement to water of any individual member of the Papago Tribe shall be satisfied out of the water resources provided in this Act.

Directs the Secretary to complete a study within one year to determine which lands within the Gila Bend Reservation have been rendered unsuitable for agriculture because of the operation of the Painted Rock Dam. Authorizes the Secretary to exchange such lands for an equivalent acreage, of like quality but suitable for agriculture. Authorizes the Secretary to require the Tribe to reimburse the United States for moneys paid for flood easements on such lands which the Secretary replaces by exchange.

Authorizes the establishment of a trust fund of $15,000,000 for the benefit of the Papago Tribe. Directs the Secretary to invest such amount in interest bearing deposits and securities. Provides that the income thus accruing may only be used, pursuant to appropriations legislation, for the subjugation of land, development of water resources, and the construction, operation, maintenance, and replacement of related facilities on the Papago Reservations which are not the obligation of the United States.

Provides that the functions of the Bureau of Reclamation under this Act shall be subject to the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act to the same extent as if performed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Extends through 1984 the period under the Federal statute of limitations during which water rights complaints may be brought by or on behalf of the Tribe or its Members (except those suits which are to be dismissed as part of the settlement agreement).

Provides that if a Federal entity is established to provide financial assistance for arid land renewable resources projects and investments, such entity shall: (1) give first priority to the needs of the Papago Tribe and (2) make price guarantees, loan guarantees, purchase agreements, loans, and joint venture projects available to the Tribe.

Authorizes appropriations for FY 1983 and thereafter to carry out this Act.

Provides for compliance with the Budget Act. Declares that any provision of this Act which directly or indirectly authorizes the enactment of new budget authority shall be effective only for fiscal years beginning after September 30, 1982.