PUB 98 - Major Water Users

Department of Natural Resources fact sheet
Department of Natural Resources Director: Carol S. Comer

Major Water Users

Missouri Department of Natural Resources
Missouri Geological Survey
Water Resources Center
P.O. Box 176
Jefferson City, MO 65102-0176

Collection of major water use data by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources is authorized under a law passed in 1983 by the Missouri General Assembly (RSMo Chapter 256.400, 256.405, 256.410, 256.415, 256.420, 256.425, and 256.430). The law's purpose is to insure the compilation of information needed to analyze future water resource management needs. The department's Missouri Water Resources Center is responsible for administering the law.

No permit is issued and the major water user does not need permission to withdraw water. However, major water users must submit the Water Use Inventory annually before March 31.

There are no fees, and there are no limits to the amount of water that can be withdrawn.

Major Water Users Registration

Regulated Activities: In 1983, the Missouri General Assembly passed a law requiring all major water users to register their water use annually. A major water user is defined as any person, firm, corporation, agency of the State of Missouri or any political subdivision with a water source and necessary equipment to withdraw or divert 100,000 gallons or more per day from any stream, river, lake, well, spring or other water source. This means anyone with equipment capable of pumping or diverting water at 70 gallons per minute or more may be considered to be a major water user. However the law does not apply to dredging operations or water withdrawn from ponds that collect and hold surface water and are located upon property owned or leased by the withdrawer “so long as the common law rights of the downstream owners are not abridged”.

Fees: None

Required Documents: A completed Water-Use Inventory form, a Source of Water form and a map showing the location of the water source by section, township and range. Forms or online submittal are available online.

Length of Permit: For the life of the water source. This is a registration; no permit is issued. Water use must be submitted annually before March 31.

Average Processing Time: Two weeks.

Public Participation: None

Applicable Statutes: RSMo 256.400 through 256.430

For more information about major water users data, contact the Water Resources Program at 573-751-7823.