BILL REQ. #:  S-0871.1 


State of Washington61st Legislature2009 Regular Session

By Senators Schoesler, Hatfield, and Shin

Read first time 02/04/09.   Referred to Committee on Agriculture & Rural Economic Development.

     AN ACT Relating to the administration of irrigation districts; amending RCW 58.17.310, 82.02.090, 87.03.460, and 89.12.050; and adding a new section to chapter 87.03 RCW.


Sec. 1   RCW 58.17.310 and 1990 c 194 s 1 are each amended to read as follows:
     (1) Whenever a city, town, or county receives an application for the approval of a plat of a division that lies in whole or in part in an irrigation district organized pursuant to chapter 87.03 RCW, the responsible administrator shall give written notice of the application, including a legal description of the short subdivision and a location map, to the irrigation district. The irrigation district shall, after receiving the notice, submit to the responsible administrator who furnished the notice a statement with any information or conditions for approval that the irrigation district deems to be necessary regarding the proposed division's effect upon the structural integrity, including lateral support, of the irrigation district facilities, other risk exposures, and the safety of the public and irrigation district.
In addition to any other requirements imposed by the provisions of this chapter, the legislative authority of any city, town, or county shall not approve a short plat or final plat, as defined in RCW 58.17.020, for any subdivision, short subdivision, lot, tract, parcel, or site which lies in whole or in part in an irrigation district organized pursuant to chapter 87.03 RCW unless there has been provided an irrigation water right-of-way for each parcel of land in such district. In addition, if the subdivision, short subdivision, lot, tract, parcel, or site lies within land within the district classified as irrigable, completed irrigation water distribution facilities for such land may be required by the irrigation district by resolution, bylaw, or rule of general applicability as a condition for approval of the short plat or final plat by the legislative authority of the city, town, or county. Rights-of-way shall be evidenced by the respective plats submitted for final approval to the appropriate legislative authority. In addition, if the subdivision, short subdivision, lot, tract, parcel, or site to be platted is wholly or partially within an irrigation district of two hundred thousand acres or more and has been previously platted by the United States bureau of reclamation as a farm unit in the district, the legislative authority shall not approve for such land a short plat or final plat as defined in RCW 58.17.020 without the approval of the irrigation district and the administrator or manager of the project of the bureau of reclamation, or its successor agency, within which that district lies. Compliance with the requirements of this section together with all other applicable provisions of this chapter shall be a prerequisite, within the expressed purpose of this chapter, to any sale, lease, or development of land in this state.

Sec. 2   RCW 82.02.090 and 2008 c 42 s 1 are each amended to read as follows:
     Unless the context clearly requires otherwise, the following definitions shall apply in RCW 82.02.050 through 82.02.090:
     (1) "Development activity" means any construction or expansion of a building, structure, or use, any change in use of a building or structure, or any changes in the use of land, that creates additional demand and need for public facilities. "Development activity" does not include buildings or structures constructed by a regional transit authority.
     (2) "Development approval" means any written authorization from a county, city, or town which authorizes the commencement of development activity.
     (3) "Impact fee" means a payment of money imposed upon development as a condition of development approval to pay for public facilities needed to serve new growth and development, and that is reasonably related to the new development that creates additional demand and need for public facilities, that is a proportionate share of the cost of the public facilities, and that is used for facilities that reasonably benefit the new development. "Impact fee" does not include a reasonable permit or application fee.
     (4) "Owner" means the owner of record of real property, although when real property is being purchased under a real estate contract, the purchaser shall be considered the owner of the real property if the contract is recorded.
     (5) "Proportionate share" means that portion of the cost of public facility improvements that are reasonably related to the service demands and needs of new development.
     (6) "Project improvements" mean site improvements and facilities that are planned and designed to provide service for a particular development project and that are necessary for the use and convenience of the occupants or users of the project, and are not system improvements. No improvement or facility included in a capital facilities plan approved by the governing body of the county, city, or town shall be considered a project improvement.
     (7) "Public facilities" means the following capital facilities owned or operated by government entities: (a) Public streets and roads; (b) publicly owned parks, open space, and recreation facilities; (c) school facilities; ((and)) (d) public irrigation districts; and (e) fire protection facilities in jurisdictions that are not part of a fire district.
     (8) "Service area" means a geographic area defined by a county, city, town, or intergovernmental agreement in which a defined set of public facilities provide service to development within the area. Service areas shall be designated on the basis of sound planning or engineering principles.
     (9) "System improvements" mean public facilities that are included in the capital facilities plan and are designed to provide service to service areas within the community at large, in contrast to project improvements.

Sec. 3   RCW 87.03.460 and 2007 c 469 s 13 are each amended to read as follows:
     In addition to their reasonable expenses in accordance with chapter 42.24 RCW, the directors shall each receive ((an amount for attending meetings and while performing other services for the district. The amount shall be fixed by resolution and entered in the minutes of the proceedings of the board. It shall not exceed)) ninety dollars for each day or portion thereof spent by a director for such actual attendance at official meetings of the district, or in performance of other official services or duties on behalf of the district. The total amount of such additional compensation received by a director may not exceed eight thousand six hundred forty dollars in a calendar year. The board shall fix the compensation of the secretary and all other employees.
     Any director may waive all or any portion of his or her compensation payable under this section as to any month or months during his or her term of office, by a written waiver filed with the secretary as provided in this section. The waiver, to be effective, must be filed any time after the director's election and prior to the date on which the compensation would otherwise be paid. The waiver shall specify the month or period of months for which it is made.
     The dollar thresholds established in this section must be adjusted for inflation by the office of financial management every five years, beginning July 1, 2008, based upon changes in the consumer price index during that time period. "Consumer price index" means, for any calendar year, that year's annual average consumer price index, for Washington state, for wage earners and clerical workers, all items, compiled by the bureau of labor and statistics, United States department of labor. If the bureau of labor and statistics develops more than one consumer price index for areas within the state, the index covering the greatest number of people, covering areas exclusively within the boundaries of the state, and including all items shall be used for the adjustments for inflation in this section. The office of financial management must calculate the new dollar threshold and transmit it to the office of the code reviser for publication in the Washington State Register at least one month before the new dollar threshold is to take effect.
     A person holding office as commissioner for two or more special purpose districts shall receive only that per diem compensation authorized for one of his or her commissioner positions as compensation for attending an official meeting or conducting official services or duties while representing more than one of his or her districts. However, such commissioner may receive additional per diem compensation if approved by resolution of all boards of the affected commissions.

Sec. 4   RCW 89.12.050 and 1963 c 3 s 2 are each amended to read as follows:
     (1) A district may enter into repayment and other contracts with the United States under the terms of the federal reclamation laws in matters relating to federal reclamation projects, and may with respect to lands within its boundaries include in the contract, among others, an agreement that:
     (((1))) (a) The district will not deliver water by means of the project works provided by the United States to or for excess lands not eligible therefor under applicable federal law.
     (((2))) (b) As a condition to receiving water by means of the project works, each excess landowner in the district, unless his excess lands are otherwise eligible to receive water under applicable federal law, shall be required to execute a recordable contract covering all of his excess lands within the district.
     (((3))) (c) All excess lands within the district not eligible to receive water by means of the project works shall be subject to assessment in the same manner and to the same extent as lands eligible to receive water, subject to such provisions as the secretary may prescribe for postponement in payment of all or part of the assessment but not beyond a date five years from the time water would have become available for such lands had they been eligible therefor.
     (((4))) (d) The secretary is authorized to amend any existing contract, deed, or other document to conform to the provisions of applicable federal law as it now exists. Any such amendment may be filed for record under RCW 89.12.080.
     (2) A district may enter into a contract with the United States for the transfer of operations and maintenance of the works of a federal reclamation project, but the contract does not impute to the district negligence for design or construction defects or deficiencies of the transferred works.

NEW SECTION.  Sec. 5   A new section is added to chapter 87.03 RCW to read as follows:
     An irrigation district may enter into any contract or agreement with or form a separate legal entity with the United States, or any state, municipality, public utility district, irrigation district, or any department of those entities, or with any joint operating agency, cooperative, mutual, consumer-owned utility, or with any investor-owned utility or with an association or legal entity composed of any such entities or utilities, for the purchase and sale of electric power, development, and/or ownership of electric power generation and/or transmission facilities including, but not limited to, electric power generated by wind. The contract or agreement may include the purchase of capability of the project to produce electricity or transmit it, in addition to the actual output of the projects. The contract or agreement may provide that the irrigation district must make the payments required by the contract or agreement whether or not a project is completed, operative, or operating, and notwithstanding the suspension, interruption, interference, reduction, or curtailment of the output or use of a project or the use, power, and energy contracted for or agreed to. The contract or agreement may also provide that payments under the contract or agreement are not subject to reduction, whether by offset or otherwise, and shall not be conditioned upon the performance or nonperformance of any party or entity under the contract or agreement.

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