Established in 2021 through landmark legislation sponsored by Utah House Speaker Brad Wilson and Senate President J. Stuart Adams, the Utah State Legislature passed the Colorado River Amendments (HB297) to create the Colorado River Authority of Utah. Governor Spencer Cox signed HB297 into law on March 16, 2021.
“Given what’s at stake for the entire state, the Colorado River Authority will help prioritize and wisely use the specialists, engineering, planning, and conservation resources required to succeed. It is not about taking water away from other states. It is about protecting Utah’s water shares.” - President Adams
The creation of the Authority comes at a critical time as Utah looks towards renegotiating the 2007 Interim Guidelines over the next five years, plans for doubling its population by 2065, and the Basin grapples with record drought.
“We are building on the vision and courage of Utah leaders who came before us and negotiated the Colorado River Compact. We celebrate the Authority because it elevates Utah to a position of strength and next-generation thinking. The Authority will significantly enhance the State’s ability to do our duty to current and future generations of Utahns.” - Speaker Wilson
During the 2022 General Session, the Authority created another board seat for a Tribal representative. It also created the opportunity for communication between the Authority and Utah's federally recognized Tribes.