I am wading through the swamp of information on the State's website about water rights and resources for permitting. I am finding a lot of it has to do with residential issues and not agricultural pursuits. I know the water rights issue is a messy one. I suspect that is why their is so little information beyond backyard ponds, and rainwater harvesting for flower gardens.
Can anyone point to an authoritive website that discusses a land owner's rights to construct ponds (permitted of course) on private property for agricultural purposes? Does anyone have any experience in this area they care to share?
I am making a lot of assumption on what I think is water law, as it applies to the State, especially east of the Cascades; but would like to get a primer on the issue before I sit down with a professional to discuss viability of a land purchase in the Ellensburg Valley. The land does NOT have 'water rights' that convey. However, it is agricultural land (by historic use and zoning) and has a working well, established in 1996 on the property (per county well log.) It also has two wet weather drainages that intercect the property. I plan to do swales and plant with the intent to retain rainfall and improve fertility. I am interested to know if swales on contour can be tied into a stock tank on one or both of those drainages. My assumption is 'no'. But I don't know that for fact.