State District Courts
The Gallegos family owns the Consolidated Larson Ditch, as well as Larson Reservoir Nos. 1 and 2 in the Upper Crow Creek Designated Ground Water Basin. Since these surface water rights pre-date the creation of the designated basin, it was thought that these rights should be protected from the more junior ground water irrigation pumping occurring upstream of the surface diversion of the Consolidated Larson Ditch. LWS conducted a field investigation to assess how the upgradient irrigation wells were affecting flow at the ditch headgate and prepared an expert report for a District Court trial in Case No. 03CV1335 demonstrating the injury being caused by the upgrading alluvial aquifer pumping. Mr. Lytle provided expert testimony both in deposition and before the Division 1 Water Court judge, Judge Hartman.
The Town of Lafayette was seeking to obtain a water storage facility to help better manage its available water supplies. LWS provided a valuation of comparable water storage rights and supported this valuation in a trial in Boulder County District Court in Case No. 07CV479. The result of the trial was that Lafayette obtain the water storage at the value recommended by Mr. Lytle in trial.
The Town of Gypsum was seeking to obtain a direct flow water right, as well as a storage right to the LEDE Ditch and LEDE Reservoir from the current owner of the rights. LWS represented the current owner and provided a valuation of these water rights based on comparable sales, although a peculiarity of these rights was that they were located on what is now National Forest Service land and represented rights that likely could not be developed by the Town at this, or other comparable, locations. Mr. Lytle provided expert testimony in Eagle County District Court and as a result of the trial, the owner was able to obtain a value for his rice similar to what Mr. Lytle testified.
The E-470 Authority had to condemn some properties along the proposed highway alignment; Mr. Lytle assisted legal counsel in developing a valuation of the water rights associated with a property south of Brighton and provided expert testimony in Adams County District Court. The property was obtained by the E-470 Authority.