Yakima County is showing foresight in the
contentious issue of water allocation, and the result will be a more
systematic way to assure water for farmers, fish and future development.
County commissioners have approved a comprehensive
plan called the Yakima County Water Resource System. A key provision is
the creation of a water bank that will allow the rural property owners
to acquire existing senior water rights before drilling for water.
Property owners must show they have water rights before they can receive
a building permit; the water bank will allow the county to buy surface
water rights that then will be sold to property owners.