Appropriation of Water Generally

ORS 537.801

  • findings


As used in ORS chapters 537 and 540:


“Basin” means one of the river basins within this state, as defined by Water Resources Department Map No. 0.2, dated 1987, and entitled “Oregon Drainage Basins,” unless the context requires otherwise.


“Basin of origin” means the basin in which surface or ground water that is the subject of an application under ORS 537.211 (Issuance of permit if application approved), 537.400 (Reservoir permits), 537.620 (Determination of completeness of application), 540.520 (Application for change of use, place of use or point of diversion), 543.210 (Preliminary permits) or 543.290 (Filing of maps, plans, estimates and other materials) is located.


The Legislative Assembly finds that the transport of significant quantities of water outside the boundaries of the basin of origin may have a significant impact on the water and other resources of the basin of origin.


Therefore, the Legislative Assembly declares that the waters of the state may not be appropriated, stored or diverted for use outside the basin of origin except in compliance with the provisions of ORS 537.801 (Definitions) to 537.860 (Vested rights protected), including, if applicable, the prior approval of the Legislative Assembly under ORS 537.810 (Diversion or appropriation of waters from basin of origin without legislative consent prohibited). [1989 c.936 §§2,3]
Chapter 537

Notes of Decisions

Water control district, in applying for water appropriation permit for hydroelectric project, was exempt from licensing provisions of ORS 543.010 to 543.620 and needed only to comply with requirements of this chapter. Steamboaters v. Winchester Water Control Dist., 69 Or App 596, 688 P2d 92 (1984), Sup Ct review denied

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Reservation to state of "all coal and other minerals" in deed of land by state as reservation of geothermal resources, (1980) Vol 41, p 298

Law Review Citations

11 EL 387 (1981); 16 EL 583, 592 (1986); 28 WLR 285 (1992)


Last accessed
Jun. 26, 2021