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[Portal ID #1962]

Department of Ecology
Committees, Boards, and Workgroups

Trust, Transfers, and Water Banking Legislative Report

The 2021 state operating budget (page 316) directed Ecology to work with Tribes and stakeholders to “refine recommendations on improving the state’s framework for water banking, water trust, and water right transfers.” Specifically, these recommendations are intended to address “issues of private investment in water banking and the merits of incentives and regulations pertaining to the out-of-basin transfer of water rights.” We plan to provide final recommendations in a report to the Legislature by December 1, 2022.

***Current Work – Public Comment Period Closed for Draft Legislative Report***

Although Ecology is not required to provide an opportunity to comment on a legislative report, we want to give everyone the opportunity provide feedback on our recommendations. We have made the Draft Legislative Report on Water Right Transfers, Water Banking, and Trust is available for public comment through September 6, 2022. There will not be any extensions of the public comment period to allow submittal of the final report to the Legislature by the December 1, 2022 deadline. However, we will do our best to include any comments we receive in an appendix to the final report to the Legislature.

Please follow the link below to view the draft report and to submit a public comment online:

Previous Work - Identify Possible Statutory Changes for Legislative Report

We convened Tribes and stakeholders to discuss possible statutory changes to address concerns with private investment in water rights, speculation using the trust water rights program and water banks, and the impacts of out-of-basin water right transfers. Ecology developed eight draft discussion papers to facilitate these conversations. Each of these draft discussion papers described one or more concepts for a potential Legislative change that may help address these issues. These eight concepts were developed based on input from Tribes and stakeholders in 2020 and 2021, and analysis Ecology conducted using the water right tracking database.

Draft Discussion Papers:

 

Relevant Information From Other Work

Documents

 File NameFile SizeDescriptionCategoryDate Added
Graduated Water Banking Fees.pdf 551 KB
None 05/05/22 01:58 PM
Limits on Temporary Donations.pdf 733.1 KB
None 05/06/22 10:32 AM
Out of Basin Transfers.pdf 714.9 KB
None 05/06/22 10:32 AM
Encourage Efficient Water Markets.pdf 446.2 KB
None 05/06/22 10:33 AM
Public Interest.pdf 427.7 KB
None 05/06/22 10:33 AM
Streamflow Dedication.pdf 640.1 KB
None 05/06/22 10:34 AM
Water Right Sales Disclosure.pdf 401.6 KB
None 05/06/22 10:34 AM
Allowed Use of Trust and Banking.pdf 558 KB
None 06/01/22 01:59 PM

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