Comprehensive state water resources program — Modifying existing and adopting new regulations and statutes.
(1) The department, through the adoption of appropriate rules, is directed, as a matter of high priority to insure that the waters of the state are utilized for the best interests of the people, to develop and implement in accordance with the policies of this chapter a comprehensive state water resources program which will provide a process for making decisions on future water resource allocation and use. The department may develop the program in segments so that immediate attention may be given to waters of a given physioeconomic region of the state or to specific critical problems of water allocation and use.
(2) In relation to the management and regulatory programs relating to water resources vested in it, the department is further directed to modify existing regulations and adopt new regulations, when needed and possible, to insure that existing regulatory programs are in accord with the water resource policy of this chapter and the program established in subsection (1) of this section.
(3) The department is directed to review all statutes relating to water resources which it is responsible for implementing. When any of the same appear to the department to be ambiguous, unclear, unworkable, unnecessary, or otherwise deficient, it shall make recommendations to the legislature including appropriate proposals for statutory modifications or additions. Whenever it appears that the policies of any such statutes are in conflict with the policies of this chapter, and the department is unable to fully perform as provided in subsection (2) of this section, the department is directed to submit statutory modifications to the legislature which, if enacted, would allow the department to carry out such statutes in harmony with this chapter.
[1997 c 32 § 2; 1988 c 47 § 5; 1971 ex.s. c 225 § 4.]
| Application -- Severability -- 1988 c 47: See notes following RCW 43.83B.300.|