Indians and water

  During the feverish development of water projects throughout the West, most Native American tribes were left out. But under federal law, Indian reservations have senior rights to vast amounts of water - more than Western states could spare even if they wanted to. Thus it is no surprise that today almost every state and reservation in the West is at odds over water. In Indian Water Rights: Negotiating the Future, authors Elizabeth Checchio and Bonnie Colby present a comprehensive guide to settling tribal water issues, either in court or through negotiation. Meant for tribal councils, state water officials, local governments, water conservancy and irrigation districts, and federal agencies, the handbook identifies the players who must be involved in a water settlement, and clarifies the legal background. Dozens of case studies are included, as are interviews with tribal members and government officials who have struggled through earlier settlements. The handbook ends with discussions on environmental protection, funding new water projects, financial compensation, water marketing, leasing and other innovations.

Tribal Water Publication, Department of agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721. 93 pages, illustrated. Oversize paper: $8.

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