Water banking pilot grants

In July 2021, the Legislature provided $14 million in funding to buy water for development of water banks in rural headwater counties. In July 2023, the Legislature reappropriated unspent funds. Then in March 2024, the Legislature expanded eligibility to all rural counties and increased the maximum funding award to $4 million per applicant. Up to $10.7 million is available for eligible water banking projects. This funding will help public entities and their partners preserve water rights in their basin for local use and to protect streamflows.

Funding cycle

  • Amount of funding available: Up to $10.7 million is available for 2023-2025 Biennium
  • Grant award limit: $4 million per applicant
  • Amount of matching funds required: none

Applications are currently being accepted.

We are accepting applications between:

Start date: Aug 1, 2023
End date: Jun 30, 2025

The application period will remain open until all funds are awarded or until the funding opportunity closes on June 30, 2025 at 5 p.m. Applications are available via Ecology’s Administration of Grants and Loans system (EAGL)

Funding is available for the following entities:

Public entities and their partners in eligible counties.

  • Adams
  • Asotin
  • Chelan
  • Clallam
  • Columbia
  • Cowlitz
  • Douglas
  • Ferry
  • Franklin
  • Garfield
  • Grant
  • Grays Harbor
  • Island
  • Jefferson
  • Kittitas
  • Klickitat
  • Lewis
  • Lincoln
  • Mason
  • Okanogan
  • Pacific
  • Pend Oreille
  • San Juan
  • Skagit
  • Skamania
  • Stevens
  • Wahkiakum
  • Walla Walla
  • Whitman
  • Yakima

Grant awards will fund the development of water banks in eligible counties. Funds will be used to purchase water rights ready for purchase as part of a water banking project proposal.

One-third of all water rights acquired under this pilot grant program must be set aside strictly for permanent instream use to support streamflows and aquatic resources. We’ve published guidance that outlines our process for awarding these grants.

More information about this funding program

Consultation meetings

We are offering consultation meetings for potential applicants to discuss the details of their water banking project with agency staff before submitting an application. We will meet requests in the order they are received and cannot guarantee meetings within a certain timeframe. See grant guidelines for additional information.

To request a consultation meeting, email WaterBankingGrants@ecy.wa.gov. Include “meeting request” in the subject line of your email.