Historical Background for Lower Rio Grande Irrigation Leases
Demand for Lower Rio Grande water created a lease market in south Texas. Lease prices vary by use, with agricultural water users typically paying lower rates per acre-foot because they have lower consumptive use of water.
Municipal users have priority in the system, with a municipal reserve of 225,000 AF reestablished each month. Excess water is allocated to irrigators, who must have a balance available in a revolving account to take delivery of water. The long-term average allocation for Lower Rio Grande contracts is 2.5 AF/acre.