Posted on | August 17, 2009 | 3 Comments
Dean Baker stood for this 2007 Las Vegas Sun portrait in the water of Big Springs, Snake Valley, Nevada, part of the Great Basin Carbonate Aquifer system targeted by Las Vegas. For 20 years, Baker has been the face of the opposition to the Las Vegas pipeline project, both for rural Nevada, where he lives, and the neighboring West Desert of central Utah, where he was born and raised. In 2007, at the behest of his childhood neighbors in Utah, Baker joined an Utahan negotiating team tasked by Congress to agree how much water, if any, Utah would consent to Nevada removing from Snake Valley, a basin shared by both states. Patricia Mulroy, Las Vegas water manager and founder of the nearly 300-mile-long pipeline project, decried Baker's appointment as political brinksmanship. However, Utah Director of Natural Resources Mike Styler said at the time of Baker, "He's a courageous person ... He's got to be able to face his neighbors with an agreement that his neighbors may not like." Last week, after a 50/50 split of unallocated water from the valley was announced, the very people who had Baker appointed to the negotiating committee began demanding release of the negotiating meeting records. Baker's response: "I am for the settlement and against the pipeline." He believes that the draft contains monitoring protections and time delays that will produce studies that will convince authorities not to pump in Snake Valley. He will be appearing in Las Vegas on Thursday August 20th to argue his case before the Southern Nevada Water Authority. It will be voting that day on whether or not to pursue the $3.5bn pipeline. See after the jump for the draft agreement, meeting times, places and link to the feed for the Las Vegas vote. Photo: Sam Morris
A draft agreement reached last week by Utah and Nevada over water sharing proposed for the Las Vegas pipeline will be presented for public hearings, which start today in Baker Nevada. Dates, times, places as follow:
- August 17th, 1pm, Baker, NV, Baker School Auditorium
- August 17th, 7pm, Delta, UT, Millar County Fair Building, 81 Manzanita Avenue
- August 18th, 10am, Salt Lake City, UT, Department of Environmental Quality Building 2, 168 North 1950 Street
- August 20th, 9am, Las Vegas, NV, Southern Nevada Water Authority Board Meeting, Molaksy Corporate Center Suite 700, 100 City Parkway
There is more on the agenda at the August 20th meeting in Las Vegas. Here, Patricia Mulroy, general manager of the Southern Nevada Water Authority, has demanded that her board give an up or down vote on the project. To watch it live online starting at 9am, click here.