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Washington water rights (even for homeowners) affected by Supreme Court ruling

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Mr. Bill:
This may affect you if you own property in Washington and intend to drill a water well.

The rule for the last umpteen years has been that you do not need a water right permit if you are:

* Providing water for livestock (no gallon per day limit).
* Watering a non-commercial lawn or garden one-half acre in size or less (no gallon per day limit, however limited to reasonable use).
* Providing water for a single home or groups of homes (limited to 5,000 gallons per day).
* Providing water for industrial purposes, including irrigation (limited to 5,000 gallons per day but no acre limit).
There are regulations in place to protect stream flows.  In the past, the Dept of Ecology has interpreted those rules as applying only to uses that require a water right permit.

The WA Supreme Court has just ruled exactly the opposite, and is requiring counties (not the Dept of Ecology) to make sure there is enough water available before allowing development.  "Enough water" means enough to protect stream flows, and also enough to ensure that someone else's water right isn't infringed.

At the moment this is causing a certain amount of chaos at the Dept of Ecology, and they are unable to say how it will affect things.

Info from the Dept of Ecology

Spokane Spokesman-Review article


Interesting for sure, wonder if this will trickle down to CA. 

Certainly another reason to leave this state upon my retirement.  Even if you can get sufficient rain collection it'll make life more difficult.

Smurf Hunter:

--- Quote from: xxdabroxx on October 20, 2016, 02:59:51 PM ---Interesting for sure, wonder if this will trickle down to CA.

--- End quote ---

Nice pun.   :P


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