In carrying out the purposes of the Act of June 17, 1902 (32 Stat. 388), and Acts amendatory thereof and supplementary thereto and known as the reclamation law, the Secretary of the Interior may enter into contract with any legally organized irrigation district whereby such irrigation district shall agree to pay the moneys required to be paid to the United States, and in such event water-right applications on the part of landowners and entrymen, in the discretion of the Secretary of the Interior, may be dispensed with. In the event of such contract being made with an irrigation district, the Secretary of the Interior, in his discretion, may contract that the payments, both for the construction of irrigation works and for operation and maintenance, on the part of the district shall be made upon such dates as will best conform to the district and taxation laws of the respective States under which such irrigation districts shall be formed, and if he deem it advisable he may contract for such penalties or interest charges in case of delinquency in payments as he may deem proper and consistent with such State laws, notwithstanding the provisions of sections 471, 472, 475, 478 to 481, 492, 493, 494 to 497 and 499 of this title. The Secretary of the Interior may accept a partial payment of the amount due from any district to the United States, providing such acceptance shall not constitute a waiver of the balance remaining due nor the interest or penalties, if any, accruing upon said balance: Provided, That no contract with an irrigation district under this section and sections 512 and 513 of this title shall be binding on the United States until the proceedings on the part of the district for the authorization of the execution of the contract with the United States shall have been confirmed by decree of a court of competent jurisdiction, or pending appellate action if ground for appeal be laid.
43 U.S. Code § 511 - Authority to contract with irrigation district
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(May 15, 1922, ch. 190, § 1, 42 Stat. 541.)