Chapter 90.24 RCW

REGULATION OF OUTFLOW OF LAKES

Sections

90.24.010Petition to regulate flowOrderExceptions.
90.24.020Contents of petition.
90.24.030Title of petitionService of petition and orderNotice.
90.24.040Hearing on petitionOrderContinuing jurisdiction.
90.24.050Devices to protect the fishCostSpecial fund.
90.24.060Installation of devices.
90.24.066Jurisdiction over weed control.
90.24.070Appellate review.


Petition to regulate flowOrderExceptions.

Ten or more owners of real property abutting on a lake may petition the superior court of the county in which the lake is situated, for an order to provide for the regulation of the outflow of the lake in order to maintain a certain water level therein. If there are fewer than ten owners, a majority of the owners abutting on a lake may petition the superior court for such an order. The court, after notice to the department of fish and wildlife and a hearing, is authorized to make an order fixing the water level thereof and directing the department of ecology to regulate the outflow therefrom in accordance with the purposes described in the petition. This section shall not apply to any lake or reservoir used for the storage of water for irrigation or other beneficial purposes, or to lakes navigable from the sea.

NOTES:

Effective date1985 c 398: "Sections 28 through 30 of this act shall take effect January 1, 1986." [ 1985 c 398 § 31.]
Lake and beach management districts: Chapter 36.61 RCW.



Contents of petition.

Such petition shall contain a complete description of the property surrounding said lake with the number of front feet contained in each tract with the name of the owner thereof and his or her address together with a brief statement of the reasons and necessity for such application; that the level sought to be established will in no wise interfere with the navigability of said lake or in any manner affect or interfere with fish or game fish which may be then contained or may thereafter be deposited in said lake, but that in order to protect fish or game fish in said lake the construction of fish ladders or other devices may be required to conserve and protect such fish or game fish, then in that event the property owners to be benefited by the establishment of said water level in such lake shall be required to pay the cost thereof, in proportion to lineal feet of water front owned by each.
[ 2013 c 23 § 609; 1939 c 107 § 3; RRS § 7388-2.]



Title of petitionService of petition and orderNotice.

The petition shall be entitled "In the matter of fixing the level of Lake . . . . . . in . . . . . . county, Washington", and shall be filed with the clerk of the court and a copy thereof, together with a copy of the order fixing the time for hearing the petition, shall be served on each owner of property abutting on the lake, not less than ten days before the hearing. Like copies shall also be served upon the director of fish and wildlife and the director of ecology. The copy of the petition and of the order fixing time for hearing shall be served in the manner provided by law for the service of summons in civil actions, or in such other manner as may be prescribed by order of the court. For the benefit of every riparian owner abutting on a stream or river flowing from such lake, a copy of the notice of hearing shall be published at least once a week for two consecutive weeks before the time set for hearing in a newspaper in each county or counties wherein located, said notice to contain a brief statement of the reasons and necessity for such application.

NOTES:

PurposeShort titleConstructionRulesSeverabilityCaptions1987 c 109: See notes following RCW 43.21B.001.



Hearing on petitionOrderContinuing jurisdiction.

At the hearing evidence shall be introduced in support of the petition and all interested parties may be heard for or against it. The court shall make findings and conclusions and enter an order granting or refusing the petition, and if the petition is granted, shall fix the water level to be maintained and direct the department of ecology to regulate and control the outflow of the lake so as to properly maintain the water level so far as practicable within maximum and minimum limits when the proper control devices are installed: PROVIDED, That the court shall have continuing jurisdiction after a petition is once granted and shall, upon subsequent petition filed and heard in accordance with the preceding sections, make such further findings and conclusions and enter such further orders as are necessary to accomplish fully the objectives sought in the initial petition: AND PROVIDED FURTHER, That shall the court find any such riparian owners abutting on a stream or river flowing from such lake be adversely affected in any way by the granting of such a petition, such petition shall be refused.

NOTES:

Effective date1985 c 398: See note following RCW 90.24.010.



Devices to protect the fishCostSpecial fund.

In the event the court shall find that to protect fish and game fish in said lake that fish ladders or other devices should be constructed therein or that other construction shall be necessary in order to maintain the determined lake level, the court shall find the proper device to be constructed, the probable cost thereof and by its order and judgment shall apportion the cost thereof among the persons whose property abuts on said lake in proportion to the lineal feet of waterfront owned by each, which sum so found shall constitute a lien against said real property and shall be paid to the county treasurer and by him or her placed in a special fund to be known as "Lake . . . . . . Improvement Fund." The director of ecology shall appoint a suitable person to be compensated by the property owners to regulate the determined level as decreed by the court.



Installation of devices.

Such improvement or device in said lake for the protection of the fish and game fish therein shall be installed by and under the direction of the board of county commissioners of said county with the approval of the respective directors of the department of fish and wildlife and the department of ecology of the state of Washington and paid for out of the special fund provided for in RCW 90.24.050.

NOTES:

PurposeShort titleConstructionRulesSeverabilityCaptions1987 c 109: See notes following RCW 43.21B.001.



Jurisdiction over weed control.

A superior court may continue its jurisdiction over weed control in those lakes that had been under the court's jurisdiction for such purposes prior to July 28, 1985. The continuing jurisdiction of a superior court for such weed control purposes shall be subject to the provisions of chapter 90.24 RCW in the same manner as the continuing jurisdiction of a superior court over the maintenance of lake water levels.
The superior court shall hold hearings under RCW 90.24.040 whenever subsequent petitions are filed with it concerning weed control on a lake over which it has continuing jurisdiction for weed control purposes. If the court finds that the weed control proposals are in the best interests of the abutting property owners, it shall determine what measures should be taken to accomplish these objectives, the probable annual cost thereof, and by its order apportion the cost among the persons whose property abuts on the lake in proportion to the lineal feet of waterfront owned by each, which sum shall constitute a lien against the real property. Payments of these sums shall be made to the county treasurer who shall place these payments into a special fund to be known as "Lake . . . . . . weed removal fund." The court shall appoint a suitable person, to be compensated by the property owners, to undertake weed control activities as decreed by the court.



Appellate review.

Any person aggrieved by the order of judgment of the superior court may seek appellate review in the same manner as in other civil actions.

NOTES:

Severability1988 c 202: See note following RCW 2.24.050.