Tribal Water Rights Registration Office Opening January 10, 2022

The CSKT-MT Water Compact was approved by the Secretary of the Department of Interior on September 17, 2021, which marked the beginning of the five-year period for the CSKT, its Members and allottees to register an Existing Use of the Tribal Water Right. 

The CSKT and State of Montana each passed into law a Unitary Administration and Management Ordinance (“Ordinance”) under the Water Compact. The CSKT law (Ordinance 111-A) and the State’s law (MCA 85-20-1902) are identical and will govern all water rights on the Flathead Reservation as of September 17, 2021. 

The Water Compact and Ordinance authorized formation of the Flathead Reservation Water Management Board (“Board”). The Board will consist of two members appointed by the CSKT, two members appointed by the State of Montana, a fifth member selected by the first four, and a sixth non-voting member appointed by the Department of Interior. The Board will be the administrative entity responsible for all water rights within the Flathead Indian Reservation. The Board selection process is ongoing.

The Board will employ a Water Engineer to carry out administrative and enforcement functions.  All water rights within the Flathead Indian Reservation, including existing uses of the Tribal Water Right, will be entered into the state-wide water rights database maintained by the Montana Department of Natural Resources, which is publicly available at http://wrqs.dnrc.mt.gov .

CSKT has mailed a Notice (see link below) to Tribal Members with information about the Tribal Water Right and has established a Tribal Water Right Registration Office assist CSKT Tribal Members and allottees in completing the Tribal Water Right Registration form.  To schedule an appointment call (406) 675-2700 ext. 1161 (after January 10, 2022).  The Tribal Water Right Registration Office will accept completed Tribal Water Right Registration forms on behalf of the Board and will transfer completed Registration forms to the Board when it is operational.

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Tribal Water Right Registration Office located at 36100 2nd Street East in Pablo

(formerly the Central Mail office)