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2022 Water Hauling Laws and Cannabis Laws

New Provisions Effective - June 3, 2022

The 2022 Oregon Legislature passed House Bill 4061 to deter water use on unlicensed cannabis, both marijuana and hemp, growing sites.

All provisions of the bill are effective June 3, 2022. Please reach out to your local Watermaster with any questions.

Records Retention for Persons Hauling Water 

A person purchasing water from a water supplier at a fire hydrant, water fill station, or other distribution location, in order to haul water to another location to be used for irrigation or nursery purposes is required to: (1) maintain records for 12 months from the date of purchase, and (2) present those records to law enforcement or the Oregon Water Resources Department (OWRD) upon request.

This means that any person who purchases water in order to haul the water to grow a crop (irrigation and nursery use) must keep records. This includes, but is not limited to:

  1. Water hauling businesses that purchase water and deliver it to a location where the water is then used to grow plants or crops.
  2. A person employed by an operation growing crops that purchases and hauls water, and the hauled water is then used to grow plants or crops.
  3. A person that owns an operation growing crops if that person purchases and hauls water themselves and the hauled water is then used to grow plants or crops

Records will include:  

  1. The date the water use purchased.
  2. The location from which the water was purchased.
  3. Name and contact information of the person the water was delivered to.
  4. How the water will be used (irrigation or nursery), including the plant type.
  5. Quantity of water delivered. 
  6. Location the water was delivered to for use. 
  7. Date the water was delivered.  

Prohibitions on Water Hauling and Providing False Information

Hauled water on unregistered cannabis 

It is prohibited to haul water or arrange to haul water to any cannabis site that has more than four cannabis plants (marijuana or hemp) not licensed with the Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC), Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA), or Oregon Health Authority (OHA).

Providing false information about water hauling

A person is prohibited from willfully or negligently providing false information to either the Department or law enforcement regarding the hauling of water to a cannabis site

Civil and Criminal Penalties

Use of water without a water right on unregistered cannabis

The use of water without a water right at any cannabis site that has more than four plants and is not licensed with Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC), Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA), or Oregon Health Authority (OHA) may be punishable by a Class A misdemeanor with a maximum fine of $25,000. 

Hauled water on unregistered cannabis

Hauling water or arranging to haul water to any cannabis site that has more than four plants and is not licensed with the Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC), Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA), or Oregon Health Authority (OHA) may be punishable by a Class A misdemeanor (which is punishable by up to one year in prison an up to a $6,250 fine) and a maximum fine of $25,000 if the person arranging to haul water is the responsible party for the grow site.

Providing false information about water hauling

Willfully or negligently providing false information to either the Department or law enforcement regarding the hauling of water to a cannabis site may be punishable by civil penalties consistent with the Department to civil penalties consistent with the Departments other authorities (OAR 690-260and up to a Class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to one year in prison an dup to a $6,250 fine.

This means both verbal and written information and that this penalty could be applied to anyone that provides false information about whether water has been hauled for use at a grow site – this could include the individual that owns or operates a grow site or an individual that hauls water.

Failure to retain and present records

Persons purchasing water from a hauling site that fail to retain and provide records of water purchases may be subject to civil penalties consistent with the Departments other authorities (OAR 690-260).

Records Retention for Water Suppliers

Water suppliers that sell water to the public must retain water sale records for up to 12 months from the date of sale and present those records immediately upon request to either the Department or law enforcement. Records will include: 

  1. Name and contact information of person the water was sold to.  
  2. Quantity of water sold. 
  3. License plate number of the vehicle used to haul water. 
  4. Purchase date.  
These requirements do not apply when water is sold to:
  • A state and/or local government purchaser,
  • A contractor licensed by the Oregon Construction Contractors Board, or
  • For water used for firefighting purposes.  
Additionally, any supplier providing these records to either the Department or law enforcement, or participating in any judicial proceedings, will have immunity from any civil or criminal liability that may result from the records being released.  

This does not mean that any water supplier is immune from compliance with Oregon Water Law. 

Notice of Violation Timelines

This bill extends the period of time that the Oregon Water Resources Department can issue a notice of violation from five days to ten business days after observing a violation. 



General Resources

House Bill 4061 Summary

New Penalties and Water Hauling Provisions

Marijuana and Hemp

Resources For Water Haulers and Bulk Water Suppliers

Compliance Tips for Water Haulers

Bulk Fill Station Signage (Printable 11x17 inches)