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Department ruling favors Prescott water project

PRESCOTT – The state Department of Water Resources has affirmed a judge’s ruling that Prescott is entitled to pump more than 8,000 acre-feet of water a year from its Paulden-area ranch.

The department says it accepted Administrative Law Judge Thomas Shedden’s ruling on Nov. 20 with one exception – that Prescott is not authorized to import an additional 500 acre-feet of water.

Prescott and Prescott Valley purchased a ranch about 30 miles away from the towns and plan to build a pipeline to bring water to residents and feed development.

Despite the decision, the debate over the project is far from over.

Filed and threatened lawsuits could further delay the project. Critics contend the pumping will impact flows into the Verde River.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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