KNAU and Arizona News
3:33 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Hopis will appeal Snowbowl ruling

The Hopi Tribe will appeal a recent ruling in favor of the City of Flagstaff’s plan to sell reclaimed wastewater to Arizona Snowbowl.

The Tribal Council recently told its lawyers to appeal the decision by the Coconino County Superior Court.

In his ruling in late December, Judge Joe Lodge said that the major issues in the case have already been decided in federal court.

The tribe’s latest suit claims that treated sewage water cannot be used for snowmaking because melted snow could flow into water basins outside of the ski resort.

Hopi Chairman LeRoy Shingoitewa says Hopis believe reclaimed wastewater is dangerous to humans and the environment.   

“People in Flagstaff are still good friends of the Hopi people, but like any cities or nations or tribes, there are times when we will have disagreements. And this is one of those times,” Shingoitewa said.

Earlier this month, a federal appeals court in San Francisco heard another case concerning reclaimed water at Snowbowl. A decision in that case is pending.