Prompted by Methow Valley dispute The Chewuch Canal Company and its Methow Valley supporters fought hard to turn back a proposed water transfer from the Chewuch River last year, and they don’t want to go through a similar process again. Since the controversial proposal by a New York investment firm to buy water rights and […]
Conservancy board never got info it sought A controversial water transfer from the Chewuch River is off the table, after the attorney handling the transaction withdrew the application, asked to reinstate it, and then withdrew it again at the last minute. Attorney Marc Marquis, who represents the Lundgren Family Limited Partnership, the Chewuch River rancher […]
The arrangement between the Lundgren Limited Family Partnership and the Chewuch Canal Company (CCC) goes back to 1910. The owners of what is now the Lundgrens’ property, along with adjacent property owners, constructed a ditch in 1908 to divert water from the Chewuch River for irrigation. In 1910, the ditch was enlarged to deliver water […]
A zoning change that increases the minimum lot size in the lower Methow Valley five-fold – from 1 to 5 acres – will remain in place until the Okanogan County commissioners adopt a new zoning code. The change was enacted on an interim basis in June because the commissioners were concerned the small lots would […]
County, state initiatives seek clarity on valley’s water usage, reserves There’s a Washington state rule that sets out how much water can be used in the Methow watershed, as well as where the water can come from and who gets to use it first. And while what’s called the “Methow Rule” sets aside a generous […]
The Okanogan Conservation District, in partnership with the Washington Departments of Ecology, State Health, Fish and Wildlife, Washington State Conservation Commission, and Washington Emergency Management Division, will host two drought information open houses on May 9 and 10. The May 9 open house will be at the Twisp Valley Grange, while the May 10 event […]
Below-average snowpack behind ‘troubling’ forecast Water supply shortages are anticipated this summer in the Methow and Okanogan river basins, based on current snowpack measurements, soil conditions and weather predictions. Water supply forecasts for the Upper Columbia basin, which includes the Methow River watershed, “range from troubling to dire,” said Jeff Marti, water resources planner for […]
State environmental review still required The amount of water proposed for sale from a Winthrop ranch to a private investment company has been revised downward in a new application, which is expected to “be revised numerous more times,” according to the attorney preparing the documents. “I have no timeline for completing the transfer. These things […]
A proposed water right sale from a Winthrop ranch to a private company is raising complex legal and policy issues that should be sent on to the state Department of Ecology for consideration, Okanogan County’s Water Conservancy Board was advised last week.
“This has very large ramifications for how the [Washington] Trust Water Program should be used and could be abused,” Mary McCrea, chairman of the Methow Watershed Foundation, said during comments at the Water Conservancy Board’s monthly meeting on Dec. 5. McCrea advised the county board, which is a volunteer group that serves in an advisory capacity for Ecology, to send the application on to the state rather than prolong the process at the county level.
The amount of water available for a proposed sale from a Winthrop ranch to a private company will be documented in a draft report that is expected to be presented to the Okanogan Water Conservancy Board at its meeting in December.
The report, called a “Record of Examination (ROE),” provides detailed information that is intended to prove how much water is available for purchase, said John Hubbard, chairman of the Water Conservancy Board.