The Oregon Water Resources Department (OWRD) invites the public to submit written comments and/or to attend public hearings on proposed amendments to the:

 

  • Grande Ronde Program Rules (OAR Chapter 690, Division 508)
  • Malheur Program Rules (OAR Chapter 690, Division 510)
  • Owyhee Basin Program Rules (OAR Chapter 690, Division 511)

 

The rules establishing the Grande Ronde reservations of water are set to expire February 7, 2017; the Malheur and Owyhee Basin reservations are set to expire on January 7, 2017, unless extended in rule by the Water Resources Commission. A reservation of water for future economic development sets aside a quantity of water for storage to meet future needs, but 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 reservations.

 

The Department will accept written comments on all three rule amendments until 5:00 p.m. on July 29, 2016.  Under ORS 183.335(2)(b)(G), the Department is also requesting public comment on whether other options should be considered for achieving the substantive goals of the rules, 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 508, Division 510 and Division 511

RULE CAPTION:  

  • Updates to Grande Ronde Basin Program and Extension of Reservations
  • Updates to Malheur Basin Program and Extension of Reservations
  • Updates to Owyhee Basin Program and Extension of Reservations

 

SUMMARY: A reservation of water for future economic development sets aside a quantity of water for storage to meet future needs. The rules establishing the Grande Ronde Basin, Malheur Basin and Owyhee Basin reservations of water are set to expire in early 2017, unless extended by rule by the Water Resources Commission. The rule amendments would extend reservations of water for future economic development for the:

  • Upper Grande Ronde Subbasin and Middle Grande Subbasin of the Grande Ronde Basin for an additional 20 years, and changes reporting requirements.
  • Three Malheur reservation