Mammoth Water Rights Struggle Continues

A year ago or so, the LADWP filed a water rights complaint with the State Water Resources Control Board against Valentine Reserve and Snowcreek Resort in Mammoth Lakes. DWP claims those two entities have diverted water into ponds, violating the City’s rights. The State has still made no determination.

Dave Cleghern from the State Water Board office said that the State Board made a site visit to Mammoth last fall and noted that the water in question is diverted to several small ponds. Cleghern noted that water is not consumed at any of the locations. He said that the State is working on a draft report of the issues raised.

The State Board will try to determine if diversions by Valentine and Snowcreek have created any harm, if they have long-standing water rights and if they need a permit of any kind.

DWP had claimed that the diversions deprived Los Angeles of water downstream. DWP attorneys have pointed to the pre-1914 right to divert water. The State has no exact time frame on a final decision or even if the State has any authority in this matter.

Valentine and Snowcreek continue to maintain the correctness of their activities.

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