Powers and duties — Water resources.
Subject to RCW 43.21A.068, the director of the department of ecology shall have the following powers and duties:
(1) The supervision of public waters within the state and their appropriation, diversion, and use, and of the various officers connected therewith;
(2) Insofar as may be necessary to assure safety to life or property, the director shall inspect the construction of all dams, canals, ditches, irrigation systems, hydraulic power plants, and all other works, systems, and plants pertaining to the use of water, and may require such necessary changes in the construction or maintenance of said works, to be made from time to time, as will reasonably secure safety to life and property;
(3) The director shall regulate and control the diversion of water in accordance with the rights thereto;
(4) The director shall determine the discharge of streams and springs and other sources of water supply, and the capacities of lakes and of reservoirs whose waters are being or may be utilized for beneficial purposes;
(5) The director shall, if requested, provide assistance to an applicant for a water right in obtaining or developing an adequate and appropriate supply of water consistent with the land use permitted for the area in which the water is to be used and the population forecast for the area under RCW 43.62.035. If the applicant is a public water supply system, the supply being sought must be used in a manner consistent with applicable land use, watershed and water system plans, and the population forecast for that area provided under RCW 43.62.035;
(6) The director shall keep such records as may be necessary for the recording of the financial transactions and statistical data thereof, and shall procure all necessary documents, forms, and blanks. The director shall keep a seal of the office, and all certificates covering any of the director's acts or the acts of the director's office, or the records and files of that office, under such seal, shall be taken as evidence thereof in all courts;
(7) The director shall render when required by the governor, a full written report of the office's work with such recommendations for legislation as the director deems advisable for the better control and development of the water resources of the state;
(8) The director and duly authorized deputies may administer oaths;
(9) The director shall establish and promulgate rules governing the administration of chapter 90.03 RCW;
(10) The director shall perform such other duties as may be prescribed by law.
[1997 c 443 § 2; 1995 c 8 § 3; 1977 c 75 § 46; 1965 c 8 § 43.21.130. Prior: 1961 c 19 § 1; prior: (i) 1951 c 57 § 3; 1921 c 7 § 72; RRS § 10830. (ii) 1951 c 57 § 3; 1917 c 117 § 8; RRS § 7358. Formerly RCW 43.21.130.]
| Finding -- Intent--1997 c 443: "The legislature finds that there is a need for development of additional water resources to meet the forecasted population growth in the state. It is the intent of chapter 443, Laws of 1997 to direct the responsible agencies to assist applicants seeking a safe and reliable water source for their use. Providing this assistance for public water supply systems can be accomplished through assistance in the creation of municipal interties and transfers, additional storage capabilities, enhanced conservation efforts, and added efficiency standards for using existing supplies." [1997 c 443 § 1.]|
Findings -- 1995 c 8: "The legislature finds and declares:
(1) The federal energy regulatory commission, under the federal power act, licenses hydropower projects in navigable waters and regularly and extensively inspects facilities for safety; and
(2) Nothing in this act alters or affects the department of ecology's authority to: (a) Participate in the federal process of licensing hydropower projects; or (b) ensure that hydropower projects comply with federal statutes such as the coastal zone management act and the clean water act and, subject to RCW 43.21A.068, all applicable state law." [1995 c 8 § 1.]
Review of permit applications to divert and store water, water flow policy: RCW 77.57.020.
Water power development, license fees: RCW 90.16.050, 90.16.060, 90.16.090.