Washington state court rules for higher Spokane River flow
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — A Washing state court ruling will maintain the Spokane River at a level that will benefit recreational and business uses of the waterway.
The Spokesman-Review reports an appeals court ruled Wednesday that the Spokane River instream flow rule set by the state Department of Ecology is invalid.
The ruling says the ecology department narrowly considered protecting fish habitats as the primary goal of the water flow level.
The appeals court says the state has a statutory obligation to set base water flows to provide for “preservation of wildlife, fish, scenic, aesthetic and other environmental values, and navigational values.”
Advocates say the minimum flow level set by the state was not acceptable for recreational uses of the river and could have hurt businesses, such as rafting companies.
Information from: The Spokesman-Review, http://www.spokesman.com