In 1999, a task force was established to study the viability of water banking in Kansas. The task force determined that water banking could be a powerful incentive-based tool for conservation that will result in water being put to its most economic and beneficial use. However, there was no mechanism in Kansas statutes that would allow their establishment in Kansas. In 2001, K.S.A. 82a-761 et seq. was adopted by the legislature to establish the framework for water banking in Kansas.
K.S.A. 82a-765 requires that each chartered water bank will result in a savings of 10 percent or more in the total amount of groundwater consumed for a representative past period. More information on the statutory requirements for water banking can be found in the references section.
According to K.S.A. 82a-765, before a water bank is authorized to operate in the state, the bank's charter must be approved by the Chief Engineer of the Kansas Department of Agriculture - Division of Water Resources ("KDA-DWR"). In 2005, the Central Kansas Water Bank Association became the first water bank in Kansas and was active 2005-2010. According to Kansas statute, not later than five years after the establishment of a water bank, the director of the Kansas Water Office ("KWO") shall convene a team to evaluate the operation of the bank. The Association's initial evaluation was conducted in 2010. This review committee recommended several changes to Kansas statutes, rules and the Association's charter.
Following the Association's initial evaluation, the revisions recommended by the review committee were implemented and submitted for approval by the Chief Engineer. On March 12, 2013, the Association received approval to be a chartered not-for-profit corporation. The Association continues to refine its procedures and policies to enhance its effectiveness in the region. The Association has revised the charter with the approval of the Chief Engineer on October 29, 2015 and May 5, 2016.
Per K.S.A. 82a-767, the Association is reviewed every five years, to evaluate the Association's effectiveness in achieving the goals of the charter. The independent review panel consists of:
In January 2018, the evaluation committee was convened by KWO to evaluate the Association activities. The Association will update the calendar with meeting updates as they are made available.
Matt is the Chief of Planning, overseeing the short and long-term management of the state’s water supplies. Additionally, Matt serves as the KWO Project Manager for the John Redmond Reservoir Dredging Project.
Jim is a Senior Scientist and Section Chief for the Geohydrology Unit for the Kansas Geological Survey.
Richard represents water right holders who have used the bank's services and were selected by the bank. Richard farms in Edwards & Kiowa counties.
Justin also represents water right holders who have used the bank's services and were selected by the bank. Justin farms in Stafford and Edwards counties.
Danny represents an institution of postsecondary education in subjects involved in water resources. Danny is a Professor at Kansas State University as well as the Biological and Agricultural Engineering State Extension Leader.
Craig also represents an institution of postsecondary education in subjects involved in water resources. Craig is an Assistant Professor at Fort Hays State University.
Bill is a Research Assistant Professor in Natural Resource Economics at Kansas State University.
John is a recognized authority on Kansas water law and is a highly regarded teacher with the University of Kansas School of Law.
Byron represents the public interest and has knowledge and experience in water policy issues and resides outside the bank boundary. Byron farms in Harvey county.
Kent also represents the public interest and has knowledge and experience in water policy issues and resides outside the bank boundary. Kent is the Director for Public Policy for Kansas Farm Bureau.
John represents the Big Bend Groundwater Management District No. 5. John currently serves on the Association board as the Chairman. Additionally, John is on the District's board of directors as the Treasurer.