Session Law

Identifying Information:L. 2002 ch. 137
Other Identifying Information:2002 House Substitute for Senate Bill 430
Tax Type:Other
Brief Description:An Act concerning water; relating to powers of certain rural water districts and public wholesale water supply districts; authorizing certain rural water district elections to be held by mail ballot; relating to certain powers of groundwater management districts; amending K.S.A. 82a-619, 82a-626 and 82a-1028 and K.S.A. 2001 Supp. 19-3552, 82a- 1030 and 82a-1903 and repealing the existing sections.
Keywords:


Body:

CHAPTER 137

HOUSE Substitute for SENATE BILL No. 430


An Act concerning water; relating to powers of certain rural water districts and public

wholesale water supply districts; authorizing certain rural water district elections to be

held by mail ballot; relating to certain powers of groundwater management districts;

amending K.S.A. 82a-619, 82a-626 and 82a-1028 and K.S.A. 2001 Supp. 19-3552, 82a-


1030 and 82a-1903 and repealing the existing sections.


Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Kansas:

Section 1. K.S.A. 2001 Supp. 19-3552 is hereby amended to read as

follows: 19-3552. For the purpose of providing a water supply or other

services to the participating public agencies the governing body of the

district shall have the following powers, authorities and privileges:

(1) To accept by gift or grant from any person, firm, corporation, trust

or foundation, or from this state or any other state or any political sub-

division or municipality thereof, or from the United States, any funds or

property or any interest therein for the uses and purposes of the district

and to hold title thereto in trust or otherwise and to bind the district to

apply the same according to the terms of such gift or grant;

(2) to sue and be sued;

(3) to enter into franchises, contracts and agreements with this or any

other state or the United States or any municipality, political subdivision

or district thereof, or any of their agencies or instrumentalities, or any

public or private person, partnership, association, or corporation of this

state or of any other state or the United States, and this state and any

such municipality, political subdivision, district, or any of their agencies

or instrumentalities, and any such public or private person, partnership,

association, or corporation is hereby authorized to enter into contracts

and agreements with such district for any term not exceeding 40 years

for the planning, development, construction, acquisition, or operation of

any facility or for any service rendered to, for, or by the district;

(4) to borrow money and evidence the same by warrants, notes, or

bonds as hereinafter provided in this act, and to refund the same by the

issuance of refunding obligations;

(5) to acquire land and interests in land by gift, purchase, exchange

or eminent domain, such power of eminent domain to be exercised within

or without the boundaries of the district in accordance with provisions of

K.S.A. 26-501, and amendments thereto;

(6) to acquire by purchase or lease, construct, install, and operate

reservoirs, pipelines, wells, check dams, pumping stations, water purifi-

cation plants, and other facilities for the production, wholesale distribu-

tion, and utilization of water and to own and hold such real and personal

property as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of its organization;

(7) to provide, by contract, to participating public agencies for the

construction, installation and operation of pipelines, wells, pumping sta-

tions and other facilities and services relating to the distribution of water

within the boundaries of the participating public agencies or retail distri-

bution and utilization of water and to own and hold such real and personal

property as may be necessary in relation thereto, except that, if the con-

tract amount for such services is $10,000 or more, the district shall be

authorized to provide such services only if the award of the contract is

based on competitive bids;

(8) to provide, by contract, to participating public agencies for the

operation and maintenance of state-permitted wastewater treatment

works, systems and other facilities and services relating to the treatment

of wastewater within the boundaries of the participating public agencies;

(8) (9) to have the general management, control, and supervision of

all the business, affairs, property, and facilities of the district, and of the

construction, installation, operation, and maintenance of district improve-

ments, and to establish regulations relating thereto;

(9) (10) to hire and retain agents, employees, engineers and attorneys

and to determine their compensation. The governing body shall select

and appoint a general manager of the district who shall serve at the plea-

sure of the governing body. The general manager shall have training and

experience in the supervision and administration of water systems and

shall manage and control the water system under the general supervision

of the governing body. All employees, servants and agents of the district

shall be under the immediate control and management of the general

manager. The general manager shall perform all such other duties as may

be prescribed by the governing body and shall give the governing body a

good and sufficient surety company bond in a sum to be set and approved

by the governing body conditioned upon the satisfactory performance of

the general manager's duties. The governing body also may require that

any other employees be bonded in such amount as it shall determine.

The cost of such bonds shall be paid out of the funds of the district;

(10) (11) to adopt and amend rules and regulations not in conflict

with the constitution and laws of this state, necessary for the carrying on

of the business, objects and affairs of the governing body and of the

district; and

(11) (12) to have and exercise all rights and powers necessary or in-

cidental to or implied from the specific powers granted herein. Such

specific powers shall not be considered as a limitation upon any power

necessary or appropriate to carry out the purposes of this act.

Sec. 2. K.S.A. 82a-619 is hereby amended to read as follows: 82a-

619. (a) Every district incorporated under this act shall have perpetual

succession, subject to dissolution or consolidation pursuant to law and

shall have the power to:

(1) To (a) Exercise eminent domain within the boundaries of such

district; (2) to

(b) sue and be sued;

(3) to (c) contract;

(4) to (d) hold real and personal property acquired by will, gift, pur-

chase, or otherwise, as authorized by law;

and (5) to (e) construct, install, maintain and operate such ponds,

reservoirs, pipelines, wells, check dams, pumping installations or other

facilities for the storage, transportation or utilization of water and such

appurtenant structures and equipment necessary to carry out the pur-

poses of its organization.

(b) Each such district shall have the power: (1) To;

(f) contract with cities or counties, or both, to operate and maintain

state-permitted wastewater treatment works, systems and other facilities

relating to the treatment of wastewater within the boundaries of the dis-

trict;

(g) cooperate with and enter into agreements with the secretary of

the United States department of agriculture or the secretary's duly au-

thorized representative necessary to carry out the purposes of its organ-

ization; and (2) to accept financial or other aid which the secretary of the

United States department of agriculture is empowered to give pursuant

to 16 U.S.C.A., secs. 590r, 590s, 590x-1, 590x-a and 590x-3, or and amend-

ments thereto.

(c) Each such district shall have the power to;

(h) acquire loans for the financing of up to 95% of the cost of the

construction or purchase of any project or projects necessary to carry out

the purposes for which such district was organized and to execute notes

and mortgages in evidence thereof with interest, or combined interest

and mortgage insurance charges, which shall not exceed 13%, except that

for purposes of interim financing, interest or combined interest and mort-

gage insurance charges shall not exceed 14%. Any district shall have the

same power to acquire loans for the refinancing of up to 95% of the

original cost of any such project or projects. The balance of the cost of

construction shall be acquired by subscription, donation, gift or otherwise

than through the medium of loans, except that in the case of cooperative

corporations and corporations not for profit being converted to water

districts as provided for in K.S.A. 82a-631 to 82a-635, inclusive, and

amendments thereto, the district may assume 100% of the indebtedness

of the corporation, providing the corporation originally raised at least 10%

of the construction cost by means otherwise than through the medium of

loans. (d) Any such loan may be secured by any or all of the physical assets

owned by the district, including easements and rights-of-way, except that

no district organized under this act shall have any power or authority to

levy any taxes whatsoever.

New Sec. 3. A rural water district organized under K.S.A. 82a-612

et seq., and amendments thereto, may provide for any election of the

district to be conducted by mail ballot in accordance with the bylaws of

the district.

Sec. 4. K.S.A. 82a-626 is hereby amended to read as follows: 82a-

626. (a) The term of office of every member elected to an original board

shall be until the date of the annual meeting of the participating members

of either the first, second or third year following the year of the incor-

poration of the district and until their successors are elected and have

qualified, and as nearly as possible the terms of an equal number of

directors on any such board shall expire on each of said such dates.

(b) Except as provided by the bylaws of the district pursuant to sec-

tion 3, and amendments thereto, at the annual meeting of each year after

the year of the election of the original board members, elections shall be

held to elect directors to fill any position on the board, the term of office

of which has expired, and any director so elected shall hold office for a

term of three years and until such director's successor is elected and has

qualified. For the purpose of election of board members and for such

other purposes as the bylaws may prescribe, annual meetings of partici-

pating members shall be held by each district between January 1 and

April 1 of each year following the year of incorporation of such district.

The board of directors shall cause notice of the time and place of each

annual meeting and the purpose thereof to be mailed to each of its par-

ticipating members or shall cause such notice to be published in a news-

paper of general circulation within the district. Every such notice shall

be mailed or published not less than 10 nor more than 30 days prior to

any such meeting. Each participating member shall be entitled to a single

vote, regardless of the number of benefit units to which such member

has subscribed.

Sec. 5. K.S.A. 82a-1028 is hereby amended to read as follows: 82a-

1028. Every groundwater management district organized under this act

shall be a body politic and corporate and shall have the power to:

(a) Adopt a seal;

(b) sue and be sued in its corporate name;

(c) rent space, maintain and equip an office, and pay other adminis-

trative expenses;

(d) employ such legal, engineering, technical, and clerical services as

may be deemed necessary by the board;

(e) purchase, hold, sell and convey land, water rights and personal

property, and execute such contracts as may, in the opinion of the board,

be deemed necessary or convenient;

(f) acquire land and interests in land by gift, exchange or eminent

domain, the power of eminent domain to be exercised within the bound-

aries of the district in like manner as provided by K.S.A. 26-501 to 26-

516, inclusive, and any acts amendatory thereof or supplemental thereto

the eminent domain procedure act, except that any land holdings acquired

pursuant hereto or in accordance with the provisions of the next preced-

ing subsection shall not in the aggregate exceed one thousand (1,000)

1,000 acres. In any case where a district has land holdings in excess of

the described limitation, the district shall dispose of such excess in a

reasonable and expeditious manner;

(g) construct, operate and maintain such works as may be determined

necessary for drainage, recharge, storage, distribution or importation of

water, and all other appropriate facilities of concern to the district;

(h) levy water user charges and land assessments, issue general and

special bonds and incur indebtedness within the limitations prescribed by

this act;

(i) contract with persons, firms, associations, partnerships, corpora-

tions or agencies of the state or federal government, and enter into co-

operative agreements with any of them;

(j) take appropriate actions to extend or reduce the territories of the

district as prescribed by this act;

(k) construct and establish research, development, and demonstra-

tion projects, and collect and disseminate research data and technical

information concerning the conservation of groundwater;

(l) install or require the installation of meters, gauges, or other meas-

uring devices and read or require water users to read and report those

readings as may be necessary to determine the quantity of water with-

drawn;

(m) provide advice and assistance in the management of drainage

problems, storage, groundwater recharge, surface water management,

and all other appropriate matters of concern to the district;

(n) adopt, amend, promulgate, and enforce by suitable action, ad-

ministrative or otherwise, reasonable administrative standards and poli-

cies relating to the conservation and management of groundwater within

management of the district which are not inconsistent with the provisions

of this act or article 7 of chapter 82a of the Kansas Statutes Annotated,

and all acts amendatory thereof or supplemental thereto article 10 of

chapter 82a of the Kansas Statutes Annotated, and amendments thereto,

or the Kansas water appropriation act;

(o) recommend to the chief engineer rules and regulations necessary

to implement and enforce the policies of the board which relate to the

conservation and management of groundwater within the district, are

within the authority of the chief engineer and are not inconsistent with

the provisions of article 10 of chapter 82a of the Kansas Statutes Anno-

tated, and amendments thereto, or the Kansas water appropriation act.

Such rules and regulations Within 90 days after receipt of a final draft of

proposed rules and regulations recommended by a groundwater manage-

ment district, the chief engineer shall: (1) Approve or reject the proposed

rules and regulations for adoption; and (2) either initiate procedures pur-

suant to the rules and regulations filing act to adopt the approved pro-

posed rules and regulations or return the rejected proposed rules and

regulations, together with written reasons for the rejection, to the ground-

water management district. Proposed rules and regulations recommended

to the chief engineer shall be of no force and effect unless and until

adopted by the chief engineer to implement the provisions of article 7 of

chapter 82a of the Kansas Statutes Annotated, and all acts amendatory

thereof or supplemental amendments thereto. All such rules and regula-

tions adopted shall be effective only within a specified district;

(p) recommend to the department of health and environment, the

state corporation commission or other appropriate state agency such other

rules and regulations, not inconsistent with law, which relate to the con-

servation and management of groundwater within the district and are

within the authority of such department, commission or other agency.

Within 90 days after receipt of a final draft of proposed rules and regu-

lations recommended by a groundwater management district, the de-

partment, commission or other agency shall: (1) Approve or reject the

proposed rules and regulations for adoption; and (2) either initiate pro-

cedures pursuant to the rules and regulations filing act to adopt the ap-

proved proposed rules and regulations or return the rejected proposed

rules and regulations, together with written reasons for the rejection, to

the groundwater management district. Proposed rules and regulations

recommended to the department, commission or other agency shall be of

no force and effect unless and until adopted by the department, commis-

sion or other such agency. All such rules and regulations adopted shall be

effective only within a specified district;

(q) enforce by suitable action, administrative or otherwise, rules and

regulations adopted as provided by subsection (o) or (p);

(p) (r) enter upon private property within the district for inspection

purposes, to determine conformance of the use of water with established

rules and regulations, including measurements of flow, depth of water,

water wastage and for such other purposes as are necessary and not in-

consistent with the purposes of this act;

(q) (s) select a residence or home office for the groundwater man-

agement district which shall be at a place in a county in which the district

or any part thereof is located and may be either within or without the

boundaries of the district. The board shall designate the county in which

the residence or home office is located as the official county for the filing

of all official acts and assessments;

(r) (t) seek and accept grants or other financial assistance that the

federal government and other public or private sources shall make avail-

able and to utilize the same to carry out the purposes and functions of

the district; and

(s) (u) recommend to the chief engineer the initiation of proceedings

for the designation of a certain area within the district as an intensive

groundwater use control area.

Sec. 6. K.S.A. 2001 Supp. 82a-1030 is hereby amended to read as

follows: 82a-1030. (a) In order to finance the operations of the district,

the board may assess an annual water user charge against every person

who withdraws groundwater from within the boundaries of the district.

The board shall base such charge upon the amount of groundwater al-

located for such person's use pursuant to such person's water right. Such

charge shall not exceed $.60 $1 for each acre-foot (325,851 gallons) of

groundwater withdrawn within the district or allocated by the water right,

except that the annual user charge for the fiscal year of the district be-

ginning on or after July 1, 2001, and before July 1, 2002, may be in an

amount not exceeding $.65 a groundwater management district may as-

sess a greater annual water user charge not exceeding $1.50 for each acre-

foot of groundwater withdrawn within the district if more than 50% of

the authorized place of use for such groundwater is outside the district.

Whenever a person shows by the submission to the board of a verified

claim and any supportive data which may be required by the board that

such person's actual annual groundwater withdrawal is in a lesser amount

than that allocated by the water right of such person, the board shall assess

such annual charge against such person on the amount of water shown

to be withdrawn by the verified claim. Any such claim shall be submitted

by April 1 of the year in which such annual charge is to be assessed. The

board may also make an annual assessment against each landowner of not

to exceed $.05 for each acre of land owned within the boundaries of the

district. Special assessments may also be levied, as provided hereafter,

against land specially benefited by a capital improvement without regard

to the limits prescribed above.

(b) Before any assessment is made, or user charge imposed, the board

shall submit the proposed budget for the ensuing year to the eligible

voters of the district at a hearing called for that purpose by one publication

in a newspaper or newspapers of general circulation within the district at

least 28 days prior to the meeting. Following the hearing, the board shall,

by resolution, adopt either the proposed budget or a modified budget

and determine the amount of land assessment or user charge, or both,

needed to support such budget.

(c) Both the user charges assessed for groundwater withdrawn and

the assessments against lands within the district shall be certified to the

proper county clerks and collected the same as other taxes in accordance

with K.S.A. 79-1801, and acts amendatory thereof or supplemental

thereto, and the amount thereof shall attach to the real property involved

as a lien in accordance with K.S.A. 79-1804, and acts amendatory thereof

or supplemental thereto. All moneys so collected shall be remitted by the

county treasurer to the treasurer of the groundwater management district

who shall deposit them to the credit of the general fund of the district.

The accounts of each groundwater management district shall be audited

annually by a public accountant or certified public accountant.

(d) Subsequent to the certification of approval of the organization of

a district by the secretary of state and the election of a board of directors

for such district, such board shall be authorized to issue no-fund warrants

in amounts sufficient to meet the operating expenses of the district until

money therefor becomes available pursuant to user charges or assess-

ments under subsection (a). In no case shall the amount of any such

issuance be in excess of 20% of the total amount of money receivable

from assessments which could be levied in any one year as provided in

subsection (a). No such warrants shall be issued until a resolution au-

thorizing the same shall have been adopted by the board and published

once in a newspaper having a general circulation in each county within

the boundaries of the district. Whereupon such warrants may be issued

unless a petition in opposition to the same, signed by not less than 10%

of the eligible voters of such district and in no case by less than 20 of the

eligible voters of such district, is filed with the county clerk of each of the

counties in such district within 10 days following such publication. In the

event such a petition is filed, it shall be the duty of the board of such

district to submit the question to the eligible voters at an election called

for such purpose. Such election shall be noticed and conducted as pro-

vided by K.S.A. 82a-1031, and amendments thereto.

Whenever no-fund warrants are issued under the authority of this sub-

section, the board of directors of such district shall make an assessment

each year for three years in approximately equal installments for the pur-

pose of paying such warrants and the interest thereon. All such assess-

ments shall be in addition to all other assessments authorized or limited

by law. Such warrants shall be issued, registered, redeemed and bear

interest in the manner and in the form prescribed by K.S.A. 79-2940, and

amendments thereto, except they shall not bear the notation required by

said statute and may be issued without the approval of the state board of

tax appeals. Any surplus existing after the redemption of such warrants

shall be handled in the manner prescribed by K.S.A. 79-2940, and amend-

ments thereto.

Sec. 7. K.S.A. 2001 Supp. 82a-1903 is hereby amended to read as

follows: 82a-1903. (a) (1) On or before November 15, 1999, the chief

engineer of the division of water resources of the department of agricul-

ture, in accordance with K.S.A. 77-420 and amendments thereto, shall

submit to the secretary of administration and the attorney general pro-

posed rules and regulations containing all current standards, statements

of policy and general orders that: (A) Have been issued or adopted by

the chief engineer; (B) are of general application and have the effect of

law; and (C) are not contained in current rules and regulations adopted

by the chief engineer.

(2) If any standard, statement of policy or general order described in

subsection (a) (1) is not submitted as required by subsection (a), such

standard, statement of policy or general order shall be void and of no

effect after November 15, 1999, until adopted by rules and regulations.

(b) (1) On or before March 1, 2000, each groundwater management

district shall submit to the chief engineer of the division of water re-

sources of the department of agriculture recommended rules and regu-

lations containing all current standards, statements of policy and general

orders that: (A) Have been issued or adopted by such district; (B) are of

general application within the district and have the effect of law; and (C)

are not contained in current rules and regulations adopted by the chief

engineer.

(2) If any standard, statement of policy or general order described in

subsection (b)(1) is not submitted as required by that subsection, such

standard, statement of policy or general order shall be void and of no

effect after March 1, 2000, until adopted by rules and regulations.

(c) Any standard, policy or order of a groundwater management dis-

trict which is within the authority of the chief engineer, other than an

administrative standard or policy relating to management of the district,

shall be void and of no effect after January 1, 2003, unless adopted by

rules and regulations of the chief engineer as provided by subsection (o)

of K.S.A. 82a-1028, and amendments thereto. Any standard, policy or

order of a groundwater management district which is within the authority

of another state agency, other than an administrative standard or policy

relating to management of the district, shall be void and of no effect after

January 1, 2004, unless adopted by rules and regulations of such agency

as provided by subsection (p) of K.S.A. 82a-1028, and amendments

thereto.

Sec. 8. K.S.A. 82a-619, 82a-626 and 82a-1028 and K.S.A. 2001 Supp.

19-3552, 82a-1030 and 82a-1903 are hereby repealed.

Sec. 9. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its

publication in the statute book.

Approved May 17, 2002.


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Date Composed: 10/10/2002 Date Modified: 10/10/2002