90.90.010  <<  90.90.020 >>   90.90.030

Allocation and development of water supplies.

(1)(a) Water supplies secured through the development of new storage facilities made possible with funding from the Columbia river basin water supply development account, the Columbia river basin taxable bond water supply development account, and the Columbia river basin water supply revenue recovery account shall be allocated as follows:
(i) Two-thirds of active storage shall be available for appropriation for out-of-stream uses; and
(ii) One-third of active storage shall be available to augment instream flows and shall be managed by the department of ecology. The timing of releases of this water shall be determined by the department of ecology, in cooperation with the department of fish and wildlife and fisheries comanagers, to maximize benefits to salmon and steelhead populations.
(b) Water available for appropriation under (a)(i) of this subsection but not yet appropriated shall be temporarily available to augment instream flows to the extent that it does not impair existing water rights.
(2) Water developed under the provisions of this section to offset out-of-stream uses and for instream flows is deemed adequate mitigation for the issuance of new water rights provided for in subsection (1)(a) of this section and satisfies all consultation requirements under state law related to the issuance of new water rights.
(3) The department of ecology shall focus its efforts to develop water supplies for the Columbia river basin on the following needs:
(a) Alternatives to groundwater for agricultural users in the Odessa subarea aquifer;
(b) Sources of water supply for pending water right applications;
(c) A new uninterruptible supply of water for the holders of interruptible water rights on the Columbia river mainstem that are subject to instream flows or other mitigation conditions to protect streamflows; and
(d) New municipal, domestic, industrial, and irrigation water needs within the Columbia river basin.
(4) The one-third/two-thirds allocation of water resources between instream and out-of-stream uses established in this section does not apply to:
(a) Applications for changes or transfers of existing water rights in the Columbia river basin; or
(b) Applications for water rights in the Walla Walla river basin implementing the Walla Walla water 2050 plan adopted June 30, 2021.
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