I heard this afternoon that Gregg Houtz, deputy counsel with the Arizona Department of Water Resources, passed away this morning. I only met Gregg on a couple of occasions and saw him speak on a few others. But in those brief encounters I could tell that he was one of the most knowledgeable people around on Arizona water law in general and the rather arcane world of Native American water rights settlements, in particular. He was also passionate about his work, down to earth, and a pleasant guy to be around.
Gregg had been with ADWR for several years and prior to that had worked as a legislative attorney on Capitol Hill. If I come across a complete bio on him from somewhere I'll post it.
The recent difficulties at ADWR with budget problems and staff reductions probably created a lot of stress for people like Gregg. I just hope that wasn't a major contributor to his death. What I do know is that he will really be missed in some circles around this state. My sincere condolences go out to his family.