Idaho Senate OKs emergency water rights to clean up spills

PHOTO: Bad Water, Photo Date: April 18, 2010 (Source: Pixabay)

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Legislation granting an emergency water right when crews are trying to clean up spills in Idaho waterways is heading to the House.

The Senate voted 35-0 on Monday to approve the legislation that the state Department of Environmental Quality says is needed to prevent someone from contending their water right is being violated due to an emergency cleanup.

Emergency crews pulling contaminated water from rivers after such things as tanker trunk crashes is standard cleanup practice.

But removing that water could be violating the state's strict water-rights laws where water distribution is closely monitored.