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use of any water of any river, stream, canon already
or ravine, or the storm or rain water hereinbefore de-
scribed, it shall be unlawful for any person, corpora-
tion, or association of persons to appropriate or divert
any such water in any way, except that the owner
whose land abuts on a running stream may use such
water therefrom as may be necessary for domestic
purposes, and any one whose land may be located
within the area of the water shed from which the
storm or rain waters are collected, may construct on
his land such dams, reservoirs, or lakes as may be
necessary for the storage of water for domestic pur-
poses for such owner of land: Provided, That the
excess of such water not used or contracted for use
by such person, corporation, or association of persons
for irrigation, mining, milling, waterworks for cities
or towns, or stock raising, may be appropriated by
any person, corporation, or association of persons, in
the manner hereinbefore provided for the appropria-
tion of water.

powers and

methods to

SECTION 11. Corporations may be formed and Corporations may acquire chartered under the provisions of this act and of the rights; general corporation laws of the Territory of Okla- duties of; homa for the purpose of constructing, maintaining pursue, and rights and operating canals, ditches, flumes, feeders, lat- acquired. erals, reservoirs, dams, lakes, and wells, and of conducting and transferring water to all persons entitled to the same for irrigation, mining, milling, to cities and towns for water works and for stock raising, and for the purpose of building storage reservoirs for the collection and storage of water for the purposes before mentioned. All such corporations shall have full power and authority to make contracts for the sale of permanent water rights, and to have the same secured by liens on the land or otherwise, and to lease, rent, or otherwise dispose of the water controlled by such corporation for such time as may be agreed upon, and in addition to the lien on the crops hereinafter provided for, the lease or rental contract may be secured by a lien on the land or otherwise. All persons who own or hold a possessory right or title to land adjoining or contiguous to any canal, ditch, flume or lateral, constructed and maintained

Rights on public lands

obtained on

under the provisions of this act, and who shall have secured a right to the use of water in said canal, ditch, flume, lateral, reservoir, dam or lake, shall be entitled to be supplied from such canal, ditch, flume, lateral, dam or lake with water for irrigation of such land, and for mining, milling, and stock raising, in accordance with the terms of his or their contract: Provided, That if the person, association or corporation, owning or controlling such water, and the person who owns or holds a possessory right or title to land adjoining or contiguous to any canal, ditch, flume or lateral, constructed and maintained under the provisions of this act, fail to agree upon a price for a permanent water right or for the use or rental of the necessary water to irrigate the land of such person and for mining, milling and stock raising, such person, firm, association or corporation shall, nevertheless, if such person, firm, association or corporation has or controls any water not contracted to others, furnish the necessary water to such person to irrigate his lands, and for mining, milling and stock raising, at such prices as may be reasonable and just: Provided further, That in case of shortage of water from drought, accident or other cause, the water to be distributed shall be divided among all consumers pro rata, according to the amount he or they may be entitled to, to the end that all shall suffer alike, and preference be given to none. The sale of the permanent water right shall be an easement to the land and pass with the title thereof, and the owner thereof shall be entitled to the use of the water upon the terms provided in his or their contract with such person or corporation, or in case. no contract is entered into, then at just and reasonable prices. Any instrument ot writing providing a permanent water right shall be admitted to record in the same manner as other instruments relating to the conveyance of land.

SECTION 12. All corporations and associations granted, and formed for the purchase of irrigation, mining, milling. private lands the construction of water works for cities and towns by condemnation. and stock raising, as provided in this act, are hereby granted the right of way, not to exceed one hundred

feet in width, over all thirteenth and thirty-third, sixteenth and thirty-sixth sections, as set aside by the Congress of the United States for school purposes, and all other sections set aside in lieu thereof, for the same purposes, with the use of the timber, rock and gravel on the right of way for construction purposes, and may obtain the right of way over private or leased lands by contract. Any such corporation or association of persons, or any city or town may also obtain the right of way over private lands, and also the land for dam sites and storage reservoirs, and the water belonging to the riparian owner by condemnation, by causing the damages for any private property appropriated by any such persons, corporations or associations, to be assessed and paid for as provided in cases of railroads, and the delay necessary to condemn and acquire the property needed by the ditch, dam site, reservoir and sewers for water supply and drainage or water of the riparian owner, shall not work to the prejudice of the person, corporation or association of persons constructing such ditch, canal, lake, reservoir or dam, and shall not be taken into account in estimating the time for the completion of such work.

used to be

back to

may be made

SECTION 13. All surplus water of a running stream, waters not not used or disposed of as provided in the preceding conducted sections of this act, shall be conducted back to the stream. stream from which it was taken, through a ditch or canal constructed under the provision of this act, or through a natural channel leading back to the stream. SECTION 14. All said persons, corporations and as- Highways sociations shall have the right to run along or across use of. all roads and highways necessary in the construction of their work, and shall at all such crossings construct and maintain necessary bridges for the accommodation of the public, and shall not impair the usefulness of such road or highway: Provided, That if any public road or highway or public bridges should be upon the ground necessary for the dam site, reservoir or lake, it shall be the duty of the commissioner's court to change said road and to remove such bridges that the same may not interfere with the construction of the proposed dam, reservoir or lake: Provided fur

Penalty for interfering

tion construction.

ther, That the expense of making such change shall be paid by the person, firm or corporation owning such dam site, lake, reservoir or canal.

SECTION 15. Any person who shall wilfully or with irriga- through gross negligence injure any irrigating canal or its appurtenances, wells, dams or reservoirs, or who shall waste the water thereof, or who shall take the water therefrom, without authority, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and for each offense shall be liable to a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars.

Penalty for damage to extent of fifty dollars.

No damage for tresspass unless fenced.

Prior lien on crops irrigated.

Corporation may borrow money and acquire lands.

SECTION 16. Any person who shall wilfully or maliciously injure or destroy any irrigation canal, or its appurtenances, or any irrigation reservoir, dam, well, or any other appurtenances thereto to the extent of fifty dollars, or if said injury shall amount in value to fifty dollars, shall be deemed guilty of a felony, and for each offense shall be punished by confinement in the penitentiary provided for Oklahoma Territory, for not less than two nor more than ten years.

SECTION 17. Unless such person, association of persons, or corporation, shall fence their said ditch, canal, reservoir, dam or lake, and keep the same securely fenced, then there shall accrue in their favor no cause of action against owners of live stock for any trespass thereon.

SECTION 18. Every person, corporation or association of persons which has heretofore constructed, or which may hereafter construct, any ditch, canal, dam, lake, or reservoir, for the purpose of irrigation, and who shall lease or rent the water from said ditch, canal, dam, lake, or reservoir to any person or association of persons or corporation owning any lands subject to irrigation from any such ditch, canal, lake, dam, or reservoir, such person, corporation or association of persons owning such ditch, canal, lake, dam or reservoir, shall have a preference lien, superior to every other lien, upon the crop or crops raised upon the land thus irrigated under such lease or contract.

SECTION 19. Any corporation organized under the provisions of the general laws of this territory or the provisions of this act, for the purpose of irrigation, shall have the power to acquire lands by voluntary

donation or purchase or in payment of stock or water rights, and to hold and dispose of all such land and other property, and to borrow money for the construction, maintenance and operation of its canals, ditches, flumes, feeders, reservoirs, dams, lakes, and wells, and may issue bonds and mortgage its corporate and other property and franchises to secure the payment of any debts contracted for same: Provded, No corporation shall issue stock or bonds except for money paid, labor done, or property actually received, and all ficticious increase of stocks or indebtedness shall be void: And provided further, All lands acquired by said corporation except such as are used for construction, maintenance, and operation of said canals, ditches, laterals, feeders, reservoirs, dams, lakes and wells, shall be alienated within fifteen years from the date of acquiring said lands, or be subject to judicial forfeiture.

SECTION 2). All laws and parts of laws in conflict with the provisions of this act are hereby repealed. SECTION 21. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its passage and approval. Approved March 12, 1897.

[blocks in formation]

AN ACT to encourage the building of reservoirs for irrigation and for

other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Legislative Assembly of the Territory of

taxes for

of dams.

SECTION 1. Any person or persons, company or Rebate on corporation owning or occupying lands in this Terri- construction tory, who shall construct or cause to be constructed ponds and on said land, a dam across a ravine or water-way, thereby creating a pond or reservoir of water of one


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