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File #: 21-0131    Version: 1
Type: recommendation Status: Passed
File created: 1/27/2021 In control: Utility Advisory Committee
Agenda date: 2/4/2021 Final action: 2/4/2021
Title: Deschutes Watershed Plan Briefing and Request for Recommendation
Attachments: 1. RCW 90_94 Streamflow Restoration.pdf, 2. WRIA13-WREC-FinalDraftPlan-Jan2021-Ch1-7Only.pdf, 3. WA State Dept of Ecology website, 4. Staff_Presentation_WRIA 13 Draft Plan_Feb2021_UAC.pdf, 5. UAC Letter -Support Deschutes Plan Vote_FINAL.pdf
Title
Deschutes Watershed Plan Briefing and Request for Recommendation

Recommended Action
Receive a briefing on the Deschutes Watershed Plan (Plan) being developed by the Water Resource Inventory Area (WRIA) 13 Deschutes Watershed Restoration and Enhancement (WRE) Committee.

Recommend the Utility Advisory Committee Chair write a letter to City Council indicating support for staff to approve submittal of the Plan to the Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology).

Report
Issue:
Whether to provide a written recommendation to City Council to support approval of the Plan by staff representation on the WRE Committee.

Staff Contact:
Donna Buxton, Groundwater Protection Program Manager, Public Works Water Resources, 360.753.8793

Presenter:
Donna Buxton

Background and Analysis:

The Deschutes WRE Committee
In response to the 2016 Washington State Supreme Court "Hirst Decision" (which changed how counties decide to approve or deny building permits that use wells for a water source), the Legislature passed the 2018 Streamflow Restoration law (law; RCW 90.94). The law supports water availability for both salmon recovery and homes in rural Washington. It requires local watershed planning to improve streamflows and clarifies the process for counties to issue building permits for homes that use a permit-exempt well for a water source.

Under the law, Ecology was required to convene the WRE Committee to estimate the impact of domestic well withdrawals on streamflows. The WRE Committee is also charged with proposing projects and actions to offset this impact, while providing a net ecological benefit (NEB) to the Deschutes WRIA over a 20-year period.

The Committee (formed in 2018) consists of representatives from tribal, state, county, and city governments; the WRIA's largest non-municipal publicly-owned water purveyor; agricultural, residential construction industry, and environmental interests; and other stakeholders including ex-officio members.

The Deschutes ...

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