90.92.060  <<  90.92.070 >>   90.92.080

Water banking. (Expires June 30, 2021.)

(1) The board may establish a mechanism to bank water for the holders of water rights within the planning area to voluntarily deposit them on a temporary or permanent basis.
(2) The board has the following authority regarding banked water in the planning area:
(a) The board may accept a surface water right or a groundwater right on a permanent or temporary basis under terms and conditions agreed upon by the water rights holder and the board.
(b) On a temporary or permanent basis, the board may accept a water right, or portion thereof, that will be made available under local water plans for streamflow enhancement under the terms of the local water plan, as provided in this chapter.
(c) Except as provided in (d) of this subsection, the board must accept a water right temporarily banked for instream flow without conducting a review of the extent and validity of the water right. Such a water right may not thereafter be authorized for any other purposes. A banked water right that has not been tentatively determined as to its extent and validity is not entitled to be protected from impairment by another water right.
(d) The board may manage a water right that has been banked as mitigation for impairment to instream flows and other existing water rights. However, the water right may only be available for mitigation to the extent the department determines the water right is valid and use of the water right for mitigation will not cause detriment or injury to existing water rights.
(3)(a) A water right banked on a temporary basis remains in the ownership of the water rights holder and not the state of Washington or the board.
(b) A water right banked on a permanent basis must be transferred to the state of Washington as a trust water right consistent with RCW 90.42.080.
(4) A water right or portion of a water right banked under this chapter is not subject to loss by forfeiture under RCW 90.14.130 through 90.14.200. When a temporary water right is withdrawn from banking, the time period that the water right was banked may not be calculated as time water was not used for purposes of RCW 90.14.160, 90.14.170, and 90.14.180.
(5) When a temporarily deposited water right is withdrawn from banking, the time period that the water right was banked may not be included in the five years of prior water use for purposes of applications to add acreage or purposes of water use under RCW 90.03.380(1).
(6) Nothing in this chapter forecloses or diminishes the rights of any person to apply to the department to transfer a water right to the state trust water rights program under the authority of chapter 90.42 RCW or to apply for a change of a water right to the department or to a water conservancy board authorized under chapter 90.80 RCW.


Expiration date2019 c 78; 2009 c 183: See note following RCW 90.92.010.
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