Session of 1999


      An  Act concerning water appropriation rights; relating to abandonment; relating to the
      state's authority regarding certain water rights; authorizing the Kansas water office to
      take certain actions regarding such water rights, subject to certain restrictions; amending
      K.S.A. 82a-718 and repealing the existing section.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Kansas:

      Section  1. K.S.A. 82a-718 is hereby amended to read as follows: 82a-
718. (a) All appropriations of water must be for some beneficial purpose.
Every water right of every kind shall be deemed abandoned and shall
terminate when without due and sufficient cause no lawful, beneficial use
is henceforth made of water under such right for three five successive
years. Before any water right shall be declared abandoned and terminated
the chief engineer shall conduct a hearing thereon in accordance with the
provisions of the Kansas administrative procedure act. Notice shall be
served on the user at least 30 days before the date of the hearing.

      The verified report of the chief engineer or such engineer's authorized
representative shall be prima facie evidence of the abandonment and
termination of any water right.

      (b) When no lawful, beneficial use of water under a water right has
been reported for three successive years, the chief engineer shall notify
the user, by certified mail, return receipt requested, that: (1) No lawful,
beneficial use of the water has been reported for three successive years;
(2) if no lawful, beneficial use is made of the water for five successive
years, the right may be terminated; and (3) the right will not be terminated
if the user shows that for one or more of the five consecutive years the
beneficial use of the water was prevented or made unnecessary by cir-
cumstances that are due and sufficient cause for nonuse, which circum-
stances shall be included in the notice.

      (c) The provisions of subsection (a) shall not apply to a water right
that has not been declared abandoned and terminated before the effective
date of this act if the five years of successive nonuse occurred exclusively
and entirely before January 1, 1990. However, the provisions of subsection
(a) shall apply if the period of five successive years of nonuse began before
January 1, 1990, and continued after that date.

      New Sec.  2. (a) The state of Kansas shall have the sole authority to
enter into negotiations, agreements and contracts with the federal gov-
ernment regarding water rights, file number 37 and file number 38, ap-
purtenant to federal property located in Johnson county. The Kansas wa-
ter office, on behalf of the state, shall enter into such negotiations,
agreements and contracts when the Kansas water office deems it neces-
sary for the achievement of policies of the state relative to the water
resources of the state. Such negotiations, agreements and contracts shall
be for the purpose of:

      (1) The return of such water rights to the state, in which case the
rights shall be terminated and their priority forfeited; or

      (2) the acquisition of such water rights by the state.

      (b) Any agreement or contract entered into pursuant to this section
shall be binding on the state only upon adoption by the legislature of a
concurrent resolution approving such agreement or contract.

      (c) If water rights are acquired by the state pursuant to this section:

      (1) The Kansas water office, on behalf of the state, shall accept and
hold such water rights in trust;

      (2) the Kansas water office shall have no authority to assign, transfer
or otherwise dispose of such water rights;

      (3) all contractual agreements associated with such water rights shall
remain in effect and the provisions of K.S.A. 82a-718 and amendments
thereto shall not apply to such water rights while held by the Kansas water
office; and

      (4) the Kansas water office shall make all annual payments associated
with such acquired water rights to any water assurance district under the
provisions of the water assurance program act until such time as such
water rights are transferred to another person or entity.

      (d) Changes to any water rights acquired by the state pursuant to this
section shall be in accordance with the Kansas water appropriation act,
including the provisions of K.S.A. 82a-708b and amendments thereto.

 Sec.  3. K.S.A. 82a-718 is hereby repealed.

 Sec.  4. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its
publication in the statute book.

I hereby certify that the above BILL originated in the
HOUSE, and passed that body


HOUSE adopted
Conference Committee Report ______________________________

Speaker of the House
Chief Clerk of the House

Passed the SENATE
     as amended ______________________________SENATE adopted
Conference Committee Report ______________________________

President of the Senate
Secretary of the Senate

APPROVED ______________________________