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Bob Hoff 11/30/05 Ecology to respect stock water opinion
by Bob Hoff, click here for bio

Program: Washington State Farm Bureau Report
Date: November 30, 2005

Washington Ag November 30, 2005 Definitely a win! Thats how State Representative Janea Holmquist describes a state Attorney Generals opinion issued this week which concludes that the department of Ecology has no authority to set a specific limit on the amount of stock water that farmers and ranchers can withdraw daily without a permit.

Holmquist: I think perhaps the greatest benefit of the formal stock water Attorney General opinion is that our cattlemen and cattlewomen and dairymen and dairywomen through out the state can take it to the bank for financing purposes. And it should remove the question of water availability.

Holmquist had asked for the legal opinion after constituents reported being turned down for financing because Ecology imposed a five-thousand gallon limit per day on groundwater withdrawals without a permit. State Senator Bob Morton also asked for the AGs opinion.

Holmquist says the department of Ecology was doing damage control yesterday because of the comments made by one its spokespeople in a Yakima newspaper article reacting to the AG opinion. Those comments seemed to disregard what the Attorney General said. Holmquist says Ecology was issuing a news release.

Holmquist: Clarifying that yes, they will respect the AG opinion and they will follow the AG opinion.

Im Bob Hoff.

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