by JR Iman, President, Painted Rocks Water Users Association
The Bitterroot Valley includes a diverse community of businesses and a wide variety of socio-economic backgrounds. A fundamental requirement to business success and property values alike is an assurance that core assets are viable and reasonably reliable year after year.
For those of us involved in Bitterroot agriculture, arguably the valley’s largest industry, we have the most to lose of anyone in this valley if the CSKT Water Compact doesn’t pass. It is our water rights, and thus the property values associated with those water rights, that are at the core of our operations.
That is why we strongly support the passage of SB 262, the CSKT Water Compact, and the greater security and predictability it brings to our water rights and property values.
We want to take this opportunity to thank Senators Fred Thomas and Pat Connell for standing up for Bitterroot agriculture when they voted to pass SB 262. We strongly urge Representatives
- Ron Ehli,
- Theresa Manzella,
- Nancy Ballance, and
- Ed Greef
to also listen to their local agricultural constituency and vote YES on SB 262, the CSKT Water Compact.
The following groups have also signed on and endorsed this letter and encourage their legislators to support the CSKT Water Compact:
- Painted Rocks Water Users Association,
- Woodside Irrigation District,
- Popham Ranch,
- Al Pernichele- Bitterroot River Water Commissioner,
- Jack Pfau,
- Teller Refuge,
- Trexler Ranch,
- Trexler Angus Ranch,
- Supply Ditch,
- Woods-Parkhurst Ditch,
- Etna Ditch,
- Tiedt-Nicholsen Ditch,
- Kootenai Creek Ranch,
- Tucker Crossing Ranch,
- Double Fork Ranch,
- Bitterroot Irrigation District,
- Loren Hawkinson-Hawkinson Ranch,
- Valley Irrigation,
- Tim and Dan Huls- Huls Dairy,
- McPherson Farms