The Oregon Water Resources Department (OWRD) invites the public to submit written comments and/or to attend a public hearing on proposed amendments to the Hood Basin Program Rules (OAR Chapter 690, Division 504). A reservation of water for future economic development sets aside a quantity of water for storage to meet future needs. The rules establishing the Hood Basin reservations are set to expire onOctober 17, 2016, unless extended in rule by the Water Resources Commission. A reservation of water does not in itself provide economic benefits to a community; however, it does provide the opportunity to develop water projects for agricultural economic development in the future. Therefore, if these reservations were to expire, there would be no future opportunity to develop water under the reservation.

OWRD will accept written comments on the rules until 5:00 p.m. on June 30, 2016.  Under ORS 183.335(2)(b)(G), OWRD is also requesting public comment on whether other options should be considered for achieving the rule’s substantive goals while reducing negative economic impact of the rule on business. More information is provided below and in the attached documents.

Rulemaking Information for OAR 690, Division 504

RULE CAPTION:  Updates to Hood Basin Program and Extension of Reservation

SUMMARY: A reservation of water for future economic development sets aside a quantity of water for multipurpose storage to meet future needs. The rules establishing the Hood Basin reservations are set to expire on October 17, 2016, unless extended in rule by the Water Resources Commission. This revised rule would extend reservations of water for future economic development for the West Fork Hood River Subbasin, East Fork Hood River Subbasin, Neal Creek Subbasin, Mosier Creek Subbasin, Eightmile Creek Subbasin and Fifteenmile Creek Subbasin of the Hood Basin for an additional 20 years, and would change reporting requirements that apply to the Oregon Department of Agriculture and Oregon Water Resources Department. In addition, the rules include expansion of classified uses to clarify that the allowable uses include agricultural, commercial, and flow augmentation for instream use; pursuant to ORS 538.200, addition of withdrawal of rivers that form waterfalls; and to address inconsistencies in terminology.

 

ATTACHMENTS: Attached are copies of:

  1. Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Hearing