WAC 173-166 Emergency drought relief

Ecology is beginning a rulemaking to amend chapter 173-166 WAC Emergency Drought Relief. 

Through rulemaking, Ecology plans to integrate information related to how Ecology manages its emergency drought funding program into the permanent rule governing emergency drought relief. This rulemaking plans to streamline administration of emergency drought funding and to add clarity and definition to processes and terms related to emergency drought relief. 

This update also intends to integrate equity considerations into funding distribution, including considerations identified under the Healthy Environment for All Act. Additionally, this rulemaking seeks to clarify appeals processes for emergency drought funding decisions, as well as the petition process for drought declaration.

As droughts become more common with a changing climate, an updated drought rule will provide increased efficiency and transparency around emergency drought relief.

Rulemaking timeline


Announcement phase (CR-101)

Filing date:
Nov. 1, 2023

Announcement documents

Rule development phase

Nov. 1, 2023 – Fall 2024

Public input & involvement

We plan to hold public meetings to provide information about the rulemaking and seek your input. We will update this page with meeting specifics. To get updates about these meetings and this rulemaking, join our email list.

Additional languages

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To request ADA accommodation for disabilities, or printed materials in a format for the visually impaired, contact Ecology's ADA Coordinator by email at ecyadacoordinator@ecy.wa.gov, or call 360-407-6831. People with impaired hearing may call Washington Relay Service at 711. People with speech disability may call TTY at 877-833-6341.