From The Fort Morgan Times (Dan Barker):
It was an economic disaster when another part of the state saw its water rights bought up to provide water for big cities, and almost every local ditch company is now partly owned by one municipality or another, said Heath Kuntz of LeonardRice Engineers Inc. Fortunately so far, very little of the water which was once used for agriculture has been used for cities, but it will happen eventually, said Fort Morgan City Councilman Brent Nation, who owns Nation Engineering…
Lack of water in the future would mean little chance for industry to expand, and little chance for economic growth, she said. One of the difficulties is that the large cities can pay big bucks to speculate and hold water rights, and smaller rural areas cannot afford as much, Kuntz said.
More South Platte River basin coverage here.