Water Rights Information
Eagle Lake Water Permit Timeline as of April 2018
Currently, Eagle Lake has two water rights for the two wells which are in permit status. The total quantity of water allowed to be removed from those wells for community purposes is 21.75 acre feet per year (this is a very large quantity of water, we currently use about 5 acre feet per year for the 30 homes, the meeting house, dam, garden and play-field). This permit status applies until full build-out of the community is achieved or until the permits expire. Well 1 permit, having been issued in 1991 and extended in 2002, will expire September 30, 2022. Well 2 permit, having been issued in 2003, will expire September 25, 2023.
The process at expiration of the water permits for a completed community would be to provide Proof of Appropriation, which documents the instantaneous and annual quantities of water used, and convert the permits to certificates which will limit our water extraction to the maximum yearly amount that we have established in the Proof of Appropriation. This would not be problematic if the community were at full build-out. However, if there are undeveloped lots at that time, then conversion from permits to certificates would leave them out of the Department of Ecology water allotment. This could leave undeveloped lot owners with significantly more effort and expense to obtain water from the Eagle Lake wells.
The Board has discussed this with the Department of Ecology (who issues the permits/certificates) and consulted a water rights attorney. In 2021 Eagle Lake will apply for a 15-year extension for both well permits. At this time, we have been told by Department of Ecology staff that it is likely that we will receive at least a 10-year extension which will take our permit status to 2032 or 2037 if we are allowed a 15-year extension. At that point we will have to convert to permits which will lock-in our water use to those lots with homes connected to the water system at the point of conversion. Subsequent connection to the water system would likely require a new application to the Department of Ecology to increase the quantity of water permitted and be very costly for any remaining undeveloped lots.