Management of public lands within watershed area providing water supply for city or town — Lake Whatcom municipal watershed pilot project — Report — Exclusive method of condemnation by city or town for watershed purposes.
(1) In the management of public lands lying within the limits of any watershed over and through which is derived the water supply of any city or town, the department may alter its land management practices to provide water with qualities exceeding standards established for intrastate and interstate waters by the department of ecology. However, if such alterations of management by the department reduce revenues from, increase costs of management of, or reduce the market value of public lands the city or town requesting such alterations shall fully compensate the department.
(2) The department shall initiate a pilot project for the municipal watershed delineated by the Lake Whatcom hydrographic boundaries to determine what factors need to be considered to achieve water quality standards beyond those required under chapter 90.48 RCW and what additional management actions can be taken on state trust lands that can contribute to such higher water quality standards. The department shall establish an advisory committee consisting of a representative each of the city of Bellingham, Whatcom county, the Whatcom county water district 10, the department of ecology, the department of fish and wildlife, and the department of health, and three general citizen members to assist in this pilot project. In the event of differences of opinion among the members of the advisory committee, the committee shall attempt to resolve these differences through various means, including the retention of facilitation or mediation services.
(3) The pilot project in subsection (2) of this section shall be completed by June 30, 2000. The department shall defer all timber sales in the Lake Whatcom hydrographic boundaries until the pilot project is complete.
(4) Upon completion of the study, the department shall provide a report to the natural resources committee of the house of representatives and to the natural resources, parks, and recreation committee of the senate summarizing the results of the study.
(5) The exclusive manner, notwithstanding any provisions of the law to the contrary, for any city or town to acquire by condemnation ownership or rights in public lands for watershed purposes within the limits of any watershed over or through which is derived the water supply of any city or town shall be to petition the legislature for such authority. Nothing in RCW 79.44.003 and this chapter shall be construed to affect any existing rights held by third parties in the lands applied for.
[2003 c 334 § 332; 1999 c 257 § 1; 1971 ex.s. c 234 § 11; 1927 c 255 § 32; RRS § 7797-32. Prior: 1915 c 147 § 2; 1909 c 223 § 3; 1907 c 256 § 6; 1901 c 148 § 1; 1899 c 129 § 1; 1897 c 89 § 12; 1895 c 178 § 23. Formerly RCW 79.01.128, 79.12.110.]
| Intent -- 2003 c 334: See note following RCW 79.02.010.|
Condemnation proceedings where state land involved: RCW 8.28.010.
Municipal corporation in adjoining state may condemn watershed property: RCW 8.28.050.