Ban repealed: Residential rain barrels now legal in Colorado

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Hickenlooper signs rain barrel legalization bill into law. (Photo: Conservation Colorado)

DENVER — After years of debate, legislators have finally made rain barrels legal in Colorado.

Governor John Hickenlooper signed a bill into effect Thursday that legalized the use of residential rain barrels in the state.

It was for years one of the strangest laws in Colorado: Banning residents from using rain barrels to collect water.

The measure to repeal the ban passed the House earlier this year and was approved by the Senate Agriculture Committee on March 30 to move to a full vote by the Senate.

On April 1, the Senate passed H.B. 1005 in a 27-6 vote.

The bill permits Coloradans to use no more than two rain barrels collecting a maximum of 110 gallons of rainwater.

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“This is a victory for Coloradans who care about their state’s incredible rivers, lakes, streams, and waters,” said Pete Smith, Executive Director of Conservation Colorado. “Rain barrels are an important educational tool and a great first step toward conservation and increasing awareness about the water challenges facing Colorado. Water conservation is the cheapest, fastest, and most flexible water strategy we have to addressing these challenges.”


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