Kansas v. Colorado, 514 U.S. 673, 19 (1995)

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Cite as: 514 U. S. 673 (1995)

Opinion of the Court

Report 10, must be read in conjunction with and as limited by Article IV-D. We agree with the Special Master that "new wells, the replacement of centrifugal with turbine pumps, and increased pumping from [pre-Compact] wells all come within [Article IV-D]." Report 194.

Second, Colorado argues as a factual matter that the Special Master unreasonably relied upon faulty reports by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) and the Colorado Legislature to conclude that the greatest amount of annual pre-Compact pumping in Colorado was 15,000 acre-feet. Colorado's Exceptions 73-74. The Special Master concluded:

"There is no precise answer to the amount of [pre-Compact] pumping. . . . That amount must simply remain as an estimate of water use that affected the general allocation of water between the states when the [C]om-pact was being negotiated. Two responsible reports, one published by the USGS and one prepared for the Colorado legislature, reached similar conclusions as to the amounts of Colorado pumping during the 1940s. . . . They have since been used by the Colorado State Engineer. I have relied on these reports and recommend that the highest annual amount shown to have been pumped during the negotiations, namely 15,000 acre-feet, should be allowed under the [C]ompact." Report 199-200.

Although the ultimate responsibility for deciding what are correct findings of fact remains with the Court, Colorado v. New Mexico, 467 U. S. 310, 317 (1984), in this instance, we are in full agreement with the Special Master. Accordingly, we overrule Colorado's exception.


In April 1980, the Administration adopted a resolution concerning the method for operating John Martin Reservoir (1980 Operating Plan). Report 47. The 1980 Operating


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