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87.03.019  <<  87.03.020 >>   87.03.025

RCW 87.03.020

Organization of district — Petition — Bond — Notice — Hearing — Order — Notice of election.

For the purpose of organizing an irrigation district, a petition, signed by the required number of holders of title or evidence of title to land within the proposed district, shall be presented to the board of county commissioners of the county in which the lands, or the greater portion thereof, are situated, which petition shall contain the following:

     (1) A description of the lands to be included in the operation of the district, in legal subdivisions or fractions thereof, and the name of the county or counties in which said lands are situated.

     (2) The signature and post office address of each petitioner, together with the legal description of the particular lands within the proposed district owned by said respective petitioners.

     (3) A general statement of the probable source or sources of water supply and a brief outline of the plan of improvement, which may be in the alternative, contemplated by the organization of the district.

     (4) A statement of the number of directors, either three or five, desired for the administration of the district and of the name by which the petitioners desire the district to be designated.

     (5) Any other matter deemed material.

     (6) A prayer requesting the board to take the steps necessary to organize the district.

     The petition must be accompanied by a good and sufficient bond, to be approved by the board of county commissioners, in double the amount of the probable cost of organizing the district, and conditioned that the bondspersons will pay all of the cost in case such organization shall not be effected. Said petition shall be presented at a regular meeting of the said board, or at any special meeting ordered to consider and act upon said petition, and shall be published once a week, for at least two weeks (three issues) before the time at which the same is to be presented, in some newspaper of general circulation printed and published in the county where said petition is to be presented, together with a notice signed by the clerk of the board of county commissioners stating the time of the meeting at which the same will be presented. There shall also be published a notice of the hearing on said petition in a newspaper published at Olympia, Washington, to be designated by the director of ecology from year to year, which said notice shall be published for at least two weeks (three issues) prior to the date of said meeting and shall contain the name of the county or counties and the number of each township and range in which the lands embraced within the boundaries of the proposed district are situated, also the time, place and purpose for said meeting, which said notice shall be signed by the petitioner whose name first appears upon the said petition. If any portion of the lands within said proposed district lie within another county or counties, then the said petition and notice shall be published for the time above provided in one newspaper printed and published in each of said counties. The said notice, together with a map of the district, shall also be served by registered mail at least thirty days before the said hearing upon the state director of ecology at Olympia, Washington, who shall, at the expense of the district in case it is later organized, otherwise at the expense of the petitioners' bondspersons, make such investigation of the sufficiency of the source and supply of water for the purposes of the proposed district, as he or she may deem necessary, and file a report of his or her findings, together with a statement of his or her costs, with the board of county commissioners at or prior to the time set for said hearing. When the petition is presented, the board of county commissioners shall hear the same, shall receive such evidence as it may deem material, and may adjourn such hearing from time to time, not exceeding four weeks in all, and on the final hearing shall establish and define the boundaries of the district along such lines as in the judgment of the board will best reclaim the lands involved and enter an order to that effect: PROVIDED, That said board shall not modify the boundaries so as to except from the operation of the district any territory within the boundaries outlined in the petition, which is susceptible of irrigation by the same system of works applicable to other lands in such proposed district and for which a water supply is available; nor shall any lands which, in the judgment of said board, will not be benefited, be included within such district; any lands included within any district, which have a partial or full water right shall be given equitable credit therefor in the apportionment of the assessments in this act provided for: AND PROVIDED FURTHER, That any owner, whose lands are susceptible of irrigation from the same source, and in the judgment of the board it is practicable to irrigate the same by the proposed district system, shall, upon application to the board at the time of the hearing, be entitled to have such lands included in the district.

     At said hearing the board shall also give the district a name and shall order that an election be held therein for the purpose of determining whether or not the district shall be organized under the provisions of this act and for the purpose of electing directors.

     The clerk of the board of county commissioners shall then give notice of the election ordered to be held as aforesaid, which notice shall describe the district boundaries as established, and shall give the name by which said proposed district has been designated, and shall state the purposes and objects of said election, and shall be published once a week, for at least two weeks (three issues) prior to said election, in a newspaper of general circulation published in the county where the petition aforesaid was presented; and if any portion of said proposed district lies within another county or counties, then said notice shall be published in like manner in a newspaper within each of said counties. Said election notice shall also require the electors to cast ballots which shall contain the words "Irrigation District -- Yes," and "Irrigation District -- No," and also the names of persons to be voted for as directors of the district: PROVIDED, That where in this act publication is required to be made in a newspaper of any county, the same may be made in a newspaper of general circulation in such county, selected by the person or body charged with making the publication and such newspaper shall be the official paper for such purpose.

[2007 c 218 § 79; 1988 c 127 § 40; 1923 c 138 § 3; 1921 c 129 § 1; 1919 c 180 § 1; 1915 c 179 § 2; 1913 c 165 § 1; 1895 c 165 § 2; 1889-90 p 671 § 2; RRS § 7418. Formerly RCW 87.01.020, part, 87.01.030, 87.01.040, and 87.01.050.]

Notes:

     Intent -- Finding -- 2007 c 218: See note following RCW 1.08.130.