The legislature finds that there is a need to establish a clear and understandable process that provides for the proper and effective management of dairy nutrients that affect the quality of surface or ground waters in the state of Washington. The legislature finds that there is a need for a program that will provide a stable and predictable business climate upon which dairy farms may base future investment decisions.
The legislature finds that federal regulations require a permit program for dairies with over seven hundred head of mature cows and, other specified dairy farms that directly discharge into waters or are otherwise significant contributors of pollution. The legislature finds that significant work has been ongoing over a period of time and that the intent of this chapter is to take the consensus that has been developed and place it into statutory form.
It is also the intent of this chapter to establish an inspection and technical assistance program for dairy farms to address the discharge of pollution to surface and ground waters of the state that will lead to water quality compliance by the industry. A further purpose is to create a balanced program involving technical assistance, regulation, and enforcement with coordination and oversight of the program by a *committee composed of industry, agency, and other representatives. Furthermore, it is the objective of this chapter to maintain the administration of the water quality program as it relates to dairy operations at the state level.
It is also the intent of this chapter to recognize the existing working relationships between conservation districts, the conservation commission, and the department of ecology in protecting water quality of the state. A further purpose of this chapter is to provide statutory recognition of the coordination of the functions of conservation districts, the conservation commission, and the department of ecology pertaining to development of dairy waste management plans for the protection of water quality.
*Reviser's note: The dairy nutrient management program advisory and oversight committee was created in section 8, chapter 262, Laws of 1998, which was vetoed.