- Associated Press - Thursday, April 4, 2019

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Legislation to help state officials cap what are thought to be hundreds of artesian wells across southern Idaho has been signed into law by Republican Gov. Brad Little.

Little last week signed the bill that could help irrigators and a federally protected snail.

Idaho Department of Water Resources Director Gary Spackman says the change clarifying an Idaho law was needed to boost pressure in aquifers and avoid confusion about whether the state will partially pay for capping artesian wells on private land.

An artesian well is one where natural pressure produces a constant flow of water without the need for pumps.

Capping artesian wells could help the Bruneau hot springsnail. The snail lives in thermal springs in the Bruneau River in southwestern Idaho but declined after natural flows into the system also declined.

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