City water rights legal spending to exceed $100K

Mar 2, 2017

Credit Courtesy of Wilderness Workshop

The City of Aspen is working to retain conditional water rights to build reservoirs on Maroon and Castle Creeks, and the court battle could get expensive.


The city spent nearly $30,000 in January on legal assistance associated with water rights. Margaret Medellin, with the city’s utility department, said this is mostly dedicated to the conditional rights Aspen owns on the two iconic creeks.

In water court, the city faces opposition from 10 individuals and organizations, including the U.S. Forest Service and Pitkin County. Aspen has $130,000 budgeted this year for legal fees and would need to go back in front of council for approval of any additional expenses.