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About Us
The vision of the Water Resources Department is to assure sufficient and sustainable water supplies are available to meet current and future needs.
Mission Statement
The Department's mission is to serve the public by practicing and promoting responsible water management through two key goals:                                   
  • to directly address Oregon's water supply needs, and
  • to restore and protect streamflows and watersheds in order to ensure the long-term sustainability of Oregon's ecosystems, economy, and quality of life.
Near Big Cliff Dam, Kyle Gorman 2006
Annual Performance Measures

Click the link above for more information about the Department's goal to build a stronger link to our Oregon Benchmark, our agency mission and goals, and high-level performance outcomes.
Regulatory Streamlining
Click the links above for more information about the Department's regulatory streamlining and sustainability efforts.
By law, all surface and ground water in Oregon belongs to the public. The Water Resources Department is the state agency charged with administration of the laws governing surface and ground water resources.  The Department's core functions are to protect existing water rights, facilitate voluntary streamflow restoration, increase the understanding of the demands on the state's water resources, provide accurate and accessible water resource data, and facilitate water supply solutions.
The Director of the Water Resources Department is charged with carrying out the water management policies and rules set by the Water Resources Commission and with overseeing the enforcement of Oregon's water laws. The Director is appointed by the Governor for a four-year term, subject to confirmation by the Senate.
The Department is organized into five divisions: Field Services, Technical Services, Water Rights and Adjudications, Director's Office, and Administrative Services. Department headquarters and the Northwest Regional office are in Salem. The Department also has four other regional offices and 15 small field offices throughout Oregon.