Overview and History
After over 30 years of relationship building, planning and negotiation, a broad coalition of interest groups and Umatilla Basin stakeholders were successful in securing $11 million in grants from the 2015 Oregon Legislature to facilitate construction of water supply infrastructure projects. Westland has the opportunity to receive $4 million of the $11 million in available grant funding to help construct the Central Project–a project which will bring Columbia River water to Westland patrons for the first time. To secure the $4 million grant, Westland must file a formal application by mid-July committing to implement the project.
Benefits to WID Patrons:
This project presents the opportunity for full season water for patrons who receive Columbia River water. Additional McKay Reservoir water will be available for patrons not receiving Columbia River water but who elect to participate in the project. The result of the project is an extended number of days the Westland canal will carry water.
What will the Project Cost the District?
- Total project cost: $15,059,000
- State Grant investment: $4,000,000
- WID investment: $11,059,000
- State commitment: 26% of project cost
How is the District getting Water Rights?
- Westland has obtained state approval for first of their kind mitigation water rights from the Columbia River (permits #S-88161 and #S-88162).
How will I get my water?
- All patrons will continue to receive Umatilla River water as they have in the past.
- Patrons not in the area served by the Columbia River will continue to receive McKay Reservoir water as they have in the past; patrons in this area who participate in the project will receive an additional amount of McKay water—currently estimated to be .67 acre-feet per acre.
- Patrons receiving Columbia River water will receive the same allocation and pay the same rate as when their water came from the McKay Reservoir; patrons in this area will also have the opportunity to buy additional water from the Columbia after their initial allocation has been used.
- “I will lose my water rights.”
- Not True, all current water rights remain the same. An additional Columbia River water right will be issued by the state.
- “I am in the area to receive Columbia River water and my water will now be more expensive.”
- Not True, you will receive the same amount of water as in the past with no increase in cost. Should you wish to buy additional water there will be an added cost for that service.
- “I am forced to buy into or participate in the project if I don’t want to.”
- Not true, only patrons who chose to will participate in the project.
- “My property will be subject to liens as a result of the project.”
- Not True, parcels will only be subject to liens if you participate in the project.