Representative Michael L. Kohler proposes the following substitute bill:




Chief Sponsor: Michael L. Kohler

Senate Sponsor: David P. Hinkins


8     General Description:
9          This bill addresses a study concerning water conservation.
10     Highlighted Provisions:
11          This bill:
12          ▸     defines terms;
13          ▸     requires the Great Salt Lake commissioner (commissioner) to conduct a study
14     concerning municipal water;
15          ▸     directs the commissioner to consult with certain persons in conducting the study;
16          ▸     requires that the commissioner publish the study findings;
17          ▸     requires reporting; and
18          ▸     makes technical and conforming amendments.
19     Money Appropriated in this Bill:
20          None
21     Other Special Clauses:
22          None
23     Utah Code Sections Affected:
24     AMENDS:
25          73-32-202, as enacted by Laws of Utah 2023, Chapter 205

26     ENACTS:
27          73-32-205, Utah Code Annotated 1953

29     Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
30          Section 1. Section 73-32-202 is amended to read:
31          73-32-202. Duties and authorizations of the commissioner.
32          (1) The commissioner shall:
33          (a) subject to Section 73-32-204, prepare an approved strategic plan for the long-term
34     health of the Great Salt Lake and update the strategic plan regularly;
35          (b) oversee the execution of the strategic plan by other state agencies as provided in
36     Section 73-32-203;
37          (c) maintain information that measures Great Salt Lake levels, salinity, and overall
38     health;
39          (d) meet regularly with the executive director of the department and with the executive
40     director of the Department of Environmental Quality;
41          (e) consult with the Division of Forestry, Fire, and State Lands regarding Title 65A,
42     Chapter 16, Great Salt Lake Watershed Enhancement Program;
43          (f) monitor the integrated water assessment conducted under Chapter 10g, Part 4, Great
44     Salt Lake Watershed Integrated Water Assessment;
45          (g) inform the governor, the president of the Senate, and the speaker of the House of
46     Representatives, at least annually, about the status of the strategic plan and the progress
47     regarding implementation of the strategic plan;
48          (h) at least annually report to the Executive Appropriations Committee regarding the
49     expenditure of money under this chapter;
50          (i) coordinate and work collaboratively with water conservancy districts that serve
51     water users within the Great Salt Lake watershed; [and]
52          (j) annually report to the Natural Resources, Agriculture, and Environment Interim
53     Committee regarding the activities of the commissioner[.]; and
54          (k) conduct the study regarding municipal water required by Section 73-32-205.
55          (2) The commissioner may:
56          (a) access information from other state or federal agencies related to the Great Salt

57     Lake;
58          (b) develop cooperative agreements between the state, political subdivisions, and
59     agencies of the federal government for involvement in the strategic plan;
60          (c) produce research, documents, maps, studies, analysis, or other information that
61     supports the strategic plan for the Great Salt Lake;
62          (d) facilitate and coordinate the exchange of information, comments, and
63     recommendations on Great Salt Lake policies between and among:
64          (i) state agencies;
65          (ii) political subdivisions;
66          (iii) institutions of higher education that conduct research relevant to the Great Salt
67     Lake;
68          (iv) nonprofit entities; and
69          (v) private business;
70          (e) communicate with the Great Salt Lake Watershed Council created under Chapter
71     10g, Part 3, Watershed Councils Act; and
72          (f) perform other duties that the commissioner considers necessary or expedient to
73     carry out the purposes of this chapter.
74          (3) In fulfilling the duties under this chapter, the commissioner shall consult and
75     coordinate, as necessary, with:
76          (a) the department;
77          (b) the Department of Agriculture and Food;
78          (c) the Department of Environmental Quality;
79          (d) other applicable state agencies;
80          (e) political subdivisions of the state;
81          (f) federal agencies;
82          (g) elected officials; and
83          (h) local tribal officials.
84          Section 2. Section 73-32-205 is enacted to read:
85          73-32-205. Study of shepherding municipal water to the Great Salt Lake.
86          (1) As used in this section:
87          (a) "Great Salt Lake basin" means:

88          (i) the surveyed meander line of the Great Salt Lake;
89          (ii) the drainage areas of the Bear River or the Bear River's tributaries;
90          (iii) the drainage areas of Bear Lake or Bear Lake's tributaries;
91          (iv) the drainage areas of the Weber River or the Weber River's tributaries;
92          (v) the drainage areas of the Jordan River or the Jordan River's tributaries;
93          (vi) the drainage areas of Utah Lake or Utah Lake's tributaries;
94          (vii) other water drainages lying between the Bear River and the Jordan River that are
95     tributary to the Great Salt Lake and not included in the drainage areas described in Subsections
96     (1)(a)(ii) through (vi); and
97          (viii) the drainage area of Tooele Valley.
98          (b) "Municipal water" means water:
99          (i) for which a municipality is acting as the distributing agent or that is the property of
100     the municipality; and
101          (ii) that is distributed outside of or within the corporate limits of the municipality.
102          (c) "State agency" means a department, division, board, council, committee, institution,
103     office, bureau, or other similar administrative unit of the executive branch of state government.
104          (d) (i) "Water conservation strategy" means a strategy that:
105          (A) is implemented in accordance with statute, is funded by the state, or is identified by
106     the commissioner; and
107          (B) has as an objective reducing the depletion or diversion of water that was previously
108     diverted under a water right.
109          (ii) "Water conservation strategy" includes:
110          (A) the use of water banks or other water marketing efforts consistent with Chapter 31,
111     Water Banking Act;
112          (B) the grant program funding the installation of secondary water meters under
113     Sections 73-10-34 and 73-10-34.5; or
114          (C) incentives to use water efficient landscaping under Section 73-10-37.
115          (2) The commissioner shall study how to implement water conservation strategies that
116     affect the Great Salt Lake basin to increase municipal water delivered to the Great Salt Lake.
117          (3) As part of the study, the commissioner shall determine:
118          (a) which water conservation strategies were specifically intended to or have the ability

119     to deliver municipal water to the Great Salt Lake;
120          (b) what amount and percentage of the funding for water conservation strategies is
121     being targeted or spent in the Great Salt Lake basin;
122          (c) whether to recommend a process by which municipal water that flows to the Great
123     Salt Lake as a result of a water conservation strategy is maintained over time;
124          (d) whether other policy, legislative, or appropriation changes for water conservation
125     strategies could result in greater amounts of municipal water flowing to the Great Salt Lake;
126     and
127          (e) what role municipal water conservation strategies and other water conservation
128     strategies play in the implementation of the strategic plan prepared by the commissioner and
129     approved by the governor.
130          (4) In conducting the study, the commissioner shall consult with state agencies,
131     municipalities, and a wide range of stakeholders with diverse interests, including those with
132     expertise in municipal water conservation, storage, use, planning, distribution, and water rights.
133          (5) The commissioner shall complete the study required by this section by no later than
134     October 1, 2024, and publish the study findings on a public website.
135          (6) The commissioner shall report the study findings to the Natural Resources,
136     Agriculture, and Environment Interim Committee by no later than the 2024 November interim
137     committee meeting for that committee.
138          Section 3. Effective date.
139          This bill takes effect on May 1, 2024.