Thu, Nov. 21

Clarkdale adopts water adequacy provisions
Subdivisions of more than 6 lots must be certified

Mayor Doug Von Gausig

Mayor Doug Von Gausig

The Clarkdale Town Council approved Ordinance 314, which adopts HB/SB 1575 Water Adequacy provisions. That means new subdivisions of six or more lots must be certified by the Arizona Department of Water Resources as having an adequate water source before being allowed to build.

The ordinance, which was approved during the council's regular meeting Tuesday night, will become law 30 days from its adoption.

"While this is certainly not a panacea for water in Clarkdale," Mayor Doug Von Gausig said, "we consider it an important step in reaching sustainable water use in our town."

Von Gausig said that to his knowledge, Clarkdale is the second municipality in Arizona to adopt these provisions.

The legislation applies to communities located outside an Active Management Area. If Yavapai County had adopted the provisions, then each community in the county would be covered by them. But it would take a unanimous vote of the county supervisors to adopt the provisions, something that isn't likely to happen in the near future.

By adopting HB/SB 1575, Clarkdale will be covered by the legislation, and the ADWR must certify subdivisions that have at least six lots.

"It's a big step," Von Gausig said. "It's the first of several things that need to be done in Arizona to get control of the water situation."

In 1982, a Groundwater Act was made law in Arizona because it was felt that without regulation, water would be depleted. That act applies to Active Management Areas, which does not include Clarkdale.

HB/SB 1575 extends the authority to adopt the water adequacy provisions to counties or communities outside of an Active Management Area.

Von Gausig told The Verde Independent that most builders in Clarkdale would probably qualify for water adequacy certification by using the town's water system. "Any developer is first going to want to use city water," he said. The developer could drill a well and then dedicate it to the town's system.

He explained that any development outside of the town's water system could still receive certification by drilling a single well for the subdivision or having individual homeowners drill wells.

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