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Arizona bill may force Scottsdale to supply Rio Verde Foothills with water. Scottsdale's mayor isn't happy

The bill would force Scottsdale to supply water to the unincorporated community through 2026.

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Editor's note: The above video aired during a previous broadcast.

Scottsdale Mayor David Ortega was shaking hands, mingling and even signing autographs at a Super Bowl event in the city's historic neighborhood on Thursday.

Ortega quickly stopped his moseying when questioned about an ongoing water crisis in a nearby unincorporated community.

"I'm headed back to the office right now," he said at the mention of Rio Verde Foothills, starting to walk away from ESPN's Historic Old Town Main Street Tailgate.

The mayor has stayed adamant since Jan. 1 on his decision to no longer allow water haulers supplying the Foothills access to the city's water supply.

READ MORE: Scottsdale will not open water supply to Rio Verde Foothills past Jan. 1

But, a bill going through the state's legislature may make Ortega's decision obsolete.

HB2561, which would essentially force Scottsdale to reopen its standpipe to the area's water haulers, passed the Arizona House Natural Resources, Energy & Water committee on Tuesday. The bill now heads to House discussion.

"If we work together, we can make it through this crisis," Rep. Alex Kolodin (R) said before voting yes on the bill. "But, if we don't work together, we're doomed."

During Ortega's retreat away from the event back to Scottsdale City Hall, he reprimanded the lawmakers who sponsored the bill.

"The three Scottsdale representatives: Senator Kavanagh and the other two, acted alone and not by consulting with the city council or myself," Ortega said. "They were very irresponsible in doing so and I don't believe they represent the people of Scottsdale on that issue."

The other two representatives Ortega is talking about are Rep. Kolodin and Rep. Joseph Chaplik (R). Rep. Gail Griffin (R), the committee's chairman, is also a sponsor of the bill.

Click here to see the committee's full discussion of the bill. Discussion on the bill starts at the 49-minute mark.

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