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Program Guidance: Use of Terms that Clarify Relationships between Water Rights

Publication number Date Published Date Revised
20-11-065February 2020April 2023
VIEW NOW Program Guidance: Use of Terms that Clarify Relationships between Water Rights (Number of pages: 14) (Publication Size: 406KB)

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Author(s) Water Resources Program
Description This document provides guidance to staff in the administration of water rights that share purposes of use, points of diversion or withdrawal, and/or places of use. It also clarifies the use of the terms primary, supplemental, alternate, standby/reserve, additive, non-additive and source.
This document applies to three areas of water rights administration:
1. Interpreting existing water right records: to provide direction when staff are making tentative determinations (see POL 1120; RCW 90.03.380, - 390, -397; and RCW 90.44.100), reviewing water system planning documents, and quantifying or administering water rights.
2. Updating existing water right records: to assist permit writers in modifying or translating an existing right to reflect the terminology described in this policy. This “translation” is a change in vocabulary only – the original intent is not altered – and may take the form of a superseding water right document or other administrative action.
3. Issuing new water rights (under RCW 90.03.290 and 90.44.060): to clarify the terms and conditions of use.
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