Montana cancels Tongue River Reservoir call

(Sheridan, Wyo.) — In a move much like it made last year , the State of Montana made a call under the Yellowstone River Compact to fill Tongue River Reservoir on April 19. The call on water rights lasted only until Monday, May 2, when Montana cancelled its call. The call applied to Wyoming water rights with a priority date later than Jan. 1, 1950, according to the Wyoming State Engineers Office. Since Montana made its call, the Wyoming State Engineer’s Office has communicated with Tongue River Basin water users, monitored water use in Wyoming, and curtailed water use by post-1950 water rights. Now that the call has been cancelled, any water user in Wyoming’s Tongue River Basin may use water in accordance with the user’s water right until or unless otherwise regulated or notified by a Wyoming Water Hydrographer/Commissioner. State Engineer Pat Tyrrell said that unlike last year when Montana cancelled the call after Tongue River Reservoir filled, Montana officials this year determined, under current snowpack and runoff conditions, that the reservoir will fill without continuing the call for regulation. “In that regard, I very much appreciate Montana’s proactive decision and their informing us so that Wyoming appropriators with post-compact rights wouldn’t be further curtailed under an interstate regulatory event," Tyrell said. "We are glad it appears Tongue River Reservoir will fill, which is beneficial to water users in both states.” See past coverage on the 2015 call on Dally here , and Wyoming and Montana's ongoing battle over water at the border here . *Feature photo: Users at the Tongue River Reservoir in April. / Pitchengine Communities* #dally #news