New to agricultural irrigation in the Snoqualmie Valley this year is a water use auction for multiple years, starting next season. All watershed improvement district members can submit a request to lease water rights for use on their farm during the 2018 irrigation season, for leases for one or multiple years, up to five.
The Snoqualmie Valley Water Bank was formed in 2017 to ensure water availability for present and future irrigated agriculture within the Snoqualmie Valley Watershed Improvement District. The agriculturally focused water bank is the first of its kind in Washington State. In 2017 the bank facilitated a two-way auction for buyers and sellers of water rights which resulted in water use agreements with six farms.
For the 2018 irrigation season, the water bank is expanding the options available to those in need of irrigation water rights by offering leases for one to five years. The 2017 market price of $125 per acre-foot of water will also be the market price in 2018.
“We heard from farmers in 2017 that the ability to lease water for more than a year would help with farm planning and increase certainty. The 2018 Short-Term Leasing Program lets farmers choose a water right lease term that works for their operation.” Said Cynthia Krass, Executive Director of the district.
Water Right Request Forms must be submitted to the SVWID during the water bank’s marketing window, Oct. 15 to Dec. 1. For forms and more information, visit www.svwid.com.