The attorneys of Montgomery & Interpreter, PLC, provide legal services in all aspects of water law, including the acquisition, identification, and evaluation of water rights, water rights transfers and exchanges, and water rights litigation. We also help clients navigate the many administrative, environmental, and legal challenges that can stand in the way of the effective exercise of groundwater and surface water rights.
Our attorneys also serve as special counsel to Indian Tribes and Nations on matters of water rights and water resource development, and litigate on their behalf in state stream adjudications and other legal forums for the quantification and protection of their federal reserved and aboriginal water rights.
As competition for groundwater and surface water supplies in the Southwest and elsewhere in the United States continues to increase due to population pressures and climate change, the need for superior legal advice in matters of water law has never been greater. Our attorneys have the experience and knowledge necessary to meet this test.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you require legal services in any of the following matters:
- Served as counsel of record in In Re The General Adjudication of All Rights to Use Water in the Gila River System and Source, for several Arizona Tribes, involving issues of broad legal importance, including subflow, state trust lands, permanent Tribal homeland, and impacts of prior water rights decrees.
- Served as counsel of record to a central Arizona Tribe in Federal District Court for the District of Arizona and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, involving the Gila River and the water rights of the Tribe under a decree entered in 1935.
- Negotiated and served as principal drafter of a long term water agreement for the provision of water services from a northern Arizona town to a Tribal client, ensuring the delivery of a water supply to the Tribe for existing and planned future uses on its Reservation, including its casino expansion project.
- Represented a New Mexico Tribe, and played a critical role in obtaining a legal victory for the Tribe in response to an attempt by the State of New Mexico to obtain an injunction against the Tribe’s diversion and use of its yet unquantified federal reserved water rights. The injunction would have severely hindered the Tribe’s ability to continue its development plans for a new 18-hole golf course and hotel to bring needed economic revenue to the Tribe. After extensive briefing and a trial, both the federal magistrate and the United States District Court ruled against the State of New Mexico in favor of the Tribe and denied the injunction. The Tribe has since constructed its new resort and golf course.
- Served as the primary attorney to a Tribe in its management, operation and repair of a river pumping station, which is responsible for pumping and delivering up to 14,000 acre-feet of water to a mine, through agreements for the lease and exchange of CAP water with the Salt River Project (SRP) and Phelps Dodge Corporation (Freeport McMoran). Served as legal advisor to the Tribal Water Board, and interfaced with the Bureau of Reclamation, Phelps Dodge and SRP on several issues, including water delivery, environmental compliance, extensive electrical repairs, and FCC licensing.
- Successfully litigated on behalf of a central Arizona Tribe before the Interior Board of Indian Appeals (IBIA), regarding the right of the Tribe to use their water settlement trust fund to pay for the annual cost of storing their CAP water, where the Bureau of Indian Affairs had denied the Tribe the right to use these funds for this purpose. The IBIA found in favor of the Tribe.
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