Pinal water panel suggests major agriculture shift

By Aaron Dorman | Pinal Central

MARICOPA — What will farmers in Pinal County do with less water resources? Without access to Central Arizona Project water they’ve long relied on, will farmers have to revert to older groundwater methods from decades past?

That was a possibility posed by former Maricopa Mayor Kelly Anderson during a talk about water solutions Friday morning.

“Realistically the area will have to go back to where we were in the fifties, sixties and seventies,” said Anderson, whose family first bought an area farm in 1949. “That means fallowing up to 40 percent of farmland, reducing acreage planted. We need to be equitable throughout the district to make sure there is adequate water supply.”

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The discussion was hosted by Pinal Partnership at the Maricopa Library and Cultural Center, as part of a series on water solutions. This time around, moderator Jordan Rose, founder of Rose Law Group, wanted to highlight agricultural concerns.

Anderson was one of two current or former farmers present. The other panelist working in agriculture, Arnott Duncan of Duncan Family Farms, was very stark in his assessment of how farmers in the area could move forward.

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