Using a digital GIS map of City-owned lands and lands the City was in the process of acquiring, GSI developed an inventory of water rights associated with the properties by searching the Oregon Water Resources Department’s (OWRD) online water rights databases. To assist the City with its risk management, GSI also conducted a search of all wells on City-owned lands that were not subject to a water right. We evaluated each water right to determine its status, opportunities to use the water right for streamflow restoration, associated risk levels, and any necessary actions needed. We compiled the identified water rights information into a database and developed a binder that included water rights, associated maps, and well logs for groundwater rights, and provided recommendations for protecting and securing the rights. We also provided water rights training and education to City staff members.
As a final step, GSI assisted the City with implementation of recommended water rights transactions to protect the identified water rights, such as leasing the water rights instream. As a follow-on to the project, GSI has worked with City staff members to develop a protocol/best management practices for water rights inventory development and auditing (due diligence review) concurrent with new property transactions. Since development of the protocol, GSI has conducted several due diligence reviews for the City.
GSI's work involved: