By Dustin Gardiner | Arizona Republic
State water regulators say there may not be enough water underground for dozens of planned developments in Pinal County, new subdivisions that, if built, would bring more than 139,000 homes.
That finding is based on data the Arizona Department of Water Resources has compiled that shows a long-term groundwater shortage in the area is possible.
The data, which The Arizona Republic obtained through a public-records request, raises red flags about growthand the water supply in one of the fastest growing parts of the state.
It also shows that concerns that a potential water shortage in Pinal, a sprawling rural area south of metro Phoenix, could affect three times as many developments than previously disclosed by the department.
“There’s not an actual water shortage in Pinal,” said Jordan Rose, a land-use attorney who represents about two dozen developers in the area. “It’s just really an issue of some very large speculative development plays locking up water supply during the last housing boom.”