Oregon Water Resources Department

Rule Rule 690-320-0010
Extension of Time Limits


Effective until July 1, 2001, this rule establishes the procedures and standards by which the Department shall evaluate applications for extensions of time for water right permit holders to:


Begin actual construction pursuant to ORS 537.248 (Requirement to include in reservoir permit date for beginning and completing construction and for perfecting water right) or as otherwise authorized by law; or


Complete construction or completely apply water to the full beneficial use pursuant to ORS 537.230 (Time allowed for construction of irrigation or other work) and 537.630 (Time allowed for construction work under permit).


This rule does not apply to permit holders requiring Federal Energy Regulatory Commission permits pursuant to ORS 537.240 (Federal permit).


After July 1, 2001, the permit extension application process rules shall be contained in OAR 690, division 315.


A holder of a permit for municipal water use, as defined in OAR 690-300-0010 (Definitions), may apply for an extension under the rules in this division. However, the Department will convene a work group to address issues relating to water rights for municipal water uses. The work group will be asked to make recommendations for rules and/or legislation to address issues specific to water rights for municipal water uses, including extensions of such water rights. Until July 1, 2001, holders of municipal water use permits are not required to apply for a permit extension. During this time, the Department will not require submission of proof of completion for, attempt to cancel, or compel an application for an extension for a water right permit for municipal water uses. This time period is offered to allow the work group to develop recommendations. The Department may shorten the time limit if the working group develops recommendations and new rules are adopted before July 1, 2001.


The time limit to begin construction of water use facilities shall not be extended except for municipal use of surface water by a municipality, permits involving Federal Energy Regulatory Commission projects, permits issued to irrigation districts for reclamation purposes, or county, municipality or district permits for new storage projects.


The time limits to complete construction or to apply the water to a beneficial use may be extended upon showing of good cause for the untimely completion. This determination shall consider the requirements of ORS 537.230 (Time allowed for construction of irrigation or other work), 537.248 (Requirement to include in reservoir permit date for beginning and completing construction and for perfecting water right), 537.630 (Time allowed for construction work under permit), and 539.010 (Protection of water rights vested or initiated prior to February 24, 1909)(5).


Time extensions granted shall be for the reasonable time period necessary to complete construction and application of water to beneficial use.


Before taking final action on any request for an extension of time, the Director shall issue a proposed final order including any conditions necessary for approval of the extension. The Director shall provide public notice of the Department’s proposed final order by means of publication in the Department’s weekly notice. A period of 45 days shall be provided for the submission of a written comment or a written protest against a proposed final order. Protests shall include the fee as required under ORS 536.050 (Fees). Each person submitting a protest shall raise all reasonably ascertainable issues and raise all reasonably available arguments supporting the person’s position by the close of the comment period.


If the Director determines that some progress has been made to complete the construction or use, but if diligence is questionable, the Director may issue a proposed final order to:


Deny the request for more time;


Grant the request for more time and notify the applicant that future requests for more time will not be granted; or


Grant the request for more time by an order amending the permit to include any condition or provisions needed for determining future diligence. Such new provisions or conditions shall not apply to any portion of the right developed under the time limits previously granted.


For extensions exceeding five years, the Department shall establish checkpoints to determine if diligence is being exercised in the development and perfection of the water use permit. Intervals between checkpoints will not exceed five year periods.


At each checkpoint, the permit holder shall submit and the Department shall review evidence of the permit holder’s diligence towards completion of the project and compliance with terms and conditions of the permit and extension. If, after this review, the Department determines the permit holder has not been diligent in developing and perfecting the water use permit, or complied with all terms and conditions, the Department shall modify or further condition the permit or extension to ensure future compliance, or begin cancellation proceedings for the undeveloped portion of the permit pursuant to ORS 537.260 (Cancellation of permit for failure of proof of completion of appropriation) or 537.410 (Failure to commence or complete work, or to properly apply water, as grounds for cancellation of permit), or require submission of a final proof survey pursuant to ORS 537.250 (Water right certificate).


The Department shall provide notice of receipt of progress reports described in subsection (10)(a) of this rule in its weekly notice and shall allow a 30-day comment period for each report. The Department shall provide notice of its determination to anyone who submitted comments.


After the 45 day comment and protest period, the Director shall determine whether to:


Issue a final order; or


Schedule a contested case hearing if the Director finds that there are significant disputes related to the use of water.

Last accessed
Jun. 8, 2021