Ground Water Control Areas and Advisory Boards

A Control Area is “any underground water district or sub-district that has been so designated by the board of control” (W.S. 41-3-912).  A Control Area serves the function of a special groundwater management district. Special permitting procedures apply in Control Areas. Special water administration and management practices may also be implemented in Control Areas

An area may be designated as a Control Area when any of the following conditions occur:

All new appropriations which are not for Domestic, Stock Watering, or Miscellaneous Uses less than 25 gallons per minute (gpm) and all petitions for a change of existing groundwater use within a Control Area are subject to public notice, public comment, and a recommendation from an elected Advisory Board to the State Engineer as to whether the application or petition should be approved or granted. If protested, the application or petition may proceed to a contested case hearing. 


W.S. §41-3-915 allows the State Engineer to implement the following corrective controls if, after a public hearing, it is determined that there is not adequate water in a Control Area to meet the needs for all appropriators: 

Once a groundwater Control Area is established, Advisory Board members are elected from landowners within the control area to review new permit applications, petitions to change existing water rights, and provide public input and recommendations to the State Engineer and Board of Control on groundwater issues within the Control Area. 

Due to the large-scale development of groundwater for irrigation use in the southeastern portion of the state, three Control Areas have been established:

-- Established September 2, 1981

-- Generally the eastern ¾ of Laramie County 

-- Incorporated within its boundaries are the previous Pine Bluffs and Carpenter "Critical" Areas, thereby eliminating them 

-- Divided into five districts

-- Established February 1, 1982

-- Generally the middle half of Platte County

-- Divided into five districts

-- Established December 2, 1977

-- Generally the northeast 1/8 of Goshen County 

-- Not divided into districts


The Laramie County Control Area Advisory Board will hold a special meeting on Monday, May 6, 2024 at 9:00 A.M. in Public Meeting Room 6 in the Capitol Extension (200 W 24th Street, Cheyenne, WY). 

The purpose of the meeting is for the Control Area Advisory Board to hear the contested case hearing on four applications for new miscellaneous use wells in the Laramie County Control Area identified by Docket No. 2022-3 as to Temporary Filing Numbers U.W. 46-4-195 (the Te Velde Lance No 1 well), 46-5-195 (the Te Velde Lance No 2 well), 46-6-195 (the Te Velde Lance No 3 well), and 46-7-195 (the Te Velde Fox Hills No 1 well). 

If additional time is required for the hearing, the meeting may continue Tuesday, May 7, 2024. 

The advisory board will not be taking any public comment during the meeting. 

For further information, contact Lisa Lindemann, Administrator, Ground Water Division, at 777-5063.