In a statement posted December 2013, Jack Moore, CBCO building official writes, “Skagit County is legally required to stop issuing building permits and subdivision approvals in the Skagit Basin that rely on new wells, unless Ecology approves a plan for mitigation or a plan for reliance on a alternative water source during times when minimum in stream flow requirements set in WAC 173-503 are not met.”
With the decision of the state legislature in October of 2009, rainwater collection is legal throughout the state with many County Health Departments adopting for potable usage. Rainwater collection for decentralized potable usage has proven to be a safe, reliable source as an “alternate water source”. Skagit County considers rainwater collection for potable use as a policy and can be legally challenged at this time. The system must be designed by an engineer with knowledge in water systems and be approved by the Health Department.