Lawmakers Schedule Town Hall To Hear From Residents On Rio Verde Foothills Water Crisis

water spray

On Sunday, Arizona lawmakers will be hosting a town hall for those affected by the Rio Verde Foothills water crisis caused by the city of Scottsdale’s decision to cut off their water supply.

Elected representatives of the Rio Verde Foothills residents, Rep. Alexander Kolodin, Rep. Joseph Chaplik, and Sen. John Kavanagh will be joined by Rep. Gail Griffin, Chair of the House Committee on Natural Resources, Energy & Water, as hosts of the community town hall this Sunday, January 29.

Kolodin, Chaplik, and Kavanagh have been advocating for the residents since before Scottsdale leaders ended discussions and refused to find temporary solutions to the Rio Verde Foothills water crisis that has left more than 500 area homes without a reliable point of access to clean water.

Scottsdale Mayor David Ortega, Scottsdale City Councilmembers, and Maricopa County District 2 Supervisor Thomas Galvin have all been invited to participate in the town hall.

Rio Verde Foothills is an unincorporated subdivision that does not have municipal water service.

Currently, a significant portion of the Rio Verde Foothills community relies on water haulers to truck water into the area, while some residents have private wells.

Residents had been purchasing water from the City of Scottsdale, which was then trucked to the community for delivery. Scottsdale gave notice to the residents that they would no longer be allowing water hauling from its standpipe beginning January 1, 2023, leaving residents with the prospect of not having access to water.

Scottsdale denied the residents water despite the fact that last week, it announced that it reduced municipal water use by 38 million gallons in 2022.

Rio Verde Foothills residents initially went to Galvin, who moonlights as a lobbyist for the water need of Saudi firms, seeking to establish a Domestic Water Improvement District (DWID); however, the Board of Supervisors voted that option down in August.

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The Corporation Commission contacted regulated water companies that operate near the Rio Verde Foothills to see if any had interest in offering a solution that would provide service to the community. EPCOR submitted a letter indicating interest in coming up with a solution to this problem. At the meeting on Wednesday, September 21, 2022, EPCOR agreed to submit an application to construct a standpipe for use by the Rio Verde Foothills community.

However, Scottsdale continues to block water delivery by denying residents access to the canals that would carry the water.

The town hall begins at 3:00 p.m. at the Reigning Grace Ranch, located at 28614 North 172nd Street in Rio Verde.

Date: Sunday, January 29, 2023
Time: 3:00 p.m.
Reigning Grace Ranch
28614 North 172nd Street
Rio Verde, AZ 85263

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