Fishways required in dams, obstructions — Penalties, remedies for failure.
(1) Subject to subsection (3) of this section, a dam or other obstruction across or in a stream shall be provided with a durable and efficient fishway approved by the director. Plans and specifications shall be provided to the department prior to the director's approval. The fishway shall be maintained in an effective condition and continuously supplied with sufficient water to freely pass fish.
(2)(a) If a person fails to construct and maintain a fishway or to remove the dam or obstruction in a manner satisfactory to the director, then within thirty days after written notice to comply has been served upon the owner, his or her agent, or the person in charge, the director may construct a fishway or remove the dam or obstruction. Expenses incurred by the department constitute the value of a lien upon the dam and upon the personal property of the person owning the dam. Notice of the lien shall be filed and recorded in the office of the county auditor of the county in which the dam or obstruction is situated. The lien may be foreclosed in an action brought in the name of the state.
(b) If, within thirty days after notice to construct a fishway or remove a dam or obstruction, the owner, his or her agent, or the person in charge fails to do so, the dam or obstruction is a public nuisance and the director may take possession of the dam or obstruction and destroy it. No liability shall attach for the destruction.
(3) For the purposes of this section, "other obstruction" does not include tide gates, flood gates, and associated man-made agricultural drainage facilities that were originally installed as part of an agricultural drainage system on or before May 20, 2003, or the repair, replacement, or improvement of such tide gates or flood gates.
[2005 c 146 § 903; 2003 c 391 § 1; 1998 c 190 § 86; 1983 1st ex.s. c 46 § 72; 1955 c 12 § 75.20.060. Prior: 1949 c 112 § 47; Rem. Supp. 1949 § 5780-321. Formerly RCW 77.55.060, 75.20.060.]
| Part headings not law -- 2005 c 146: See note following RCW 77.55.011.|
Severability -- 2003 c 391: "If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected." [2003 c 391 § 8.]
Effective date -- 2003 c 391: "This act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and takes effect immediately [May 20, 2003]." [2003 c 391 § 9.]