County takes proactive step in water rights allocations

12/18/2013  By Yakima Herald-Republic Editorial Board

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.

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