River Action Alert: Please help Oregon’s rivers by speaking up in support of ODFW’s Water Program!

Please help Oregon’s rivers by speaking up in support of ODFW’s Water Program!

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (ODFW) Water Quality and Quantity Program plays a vital role in protecting water in our state’s iconic rivers. Whether it’s reviewing new water right applications to ensure that they won’t harm our rivers, securing new instream water rights to legally protect streamflows forever, or helping set water policy in every river basin statewide, ODFW works to protect water in our streams – and provides an invaluable service to all Oregonians.

Looking to the future, climate change is one of the greatest challenges facing Oregon’s rivers and streams and makes ODFW’s Water Program work more important than ever. ODFW needs resources to prioritize streamflow restoration efforts, participate in collaborative processes to develop creative solutions to Oregon’s water conflicts, and plan for the future.

This week the Legislature’s Joint Ways and Means Natural Resources Subcommittee will have a public hearing on ODFW’s budget (SB 5509). Verbal (in person or virtual) testimony will take place on March 22 at 1:00, and written testimony will be accepted through Friday March 24th before 1:00.

If you care about Oregon’s rivers, now is the time to speak up for ODFW’s Water Program. It is critical that the legislature hear your voice!


There are two options to make your voice heard, either by providing written testimony or verbal testimony (either in person or virtual) on ODFW’s Budget Bill, SB 5509.

Written testimony: Submit written testimony by filling out the testimony submission form and uploading a PDF of your comments. Click here for the link to submit. Written testimony will be accepted until 1:00 pm on Friday, March 24th.

Verbal Testimony: Sign up to provide either in person or virtual testimony. Click here for the link to sign up, and and select “Register to Testify” next to SB 5509 for Wednesday’s March 22nd hearing.

    Suggested Talking Points:

1. Protect ODFW’s Water Program from cuts: The Legislature has worked hard over the past decade to staff up ODFW’s Water Program to the current level. Please protect against any cuts to this program in the final legislative budget.

2. Fund ODFW POP 107, Integrated Water Solutions: Policy Option Package 107 would fund 3 ODFW positions to work on Integrated Water Resources Solutions, including Place Based Planning and other regional collaboratives. The water needs of salmon, other fish, and wildlife will be severely compromised without ODFW participation in these regional water forums.

3. Fund ODFW POP 110, Statewide Stream Temperature Modeling: POP 102 is critical to understanding stream temperatures and how they affect Oregon’s iconic species, including federally listed salmon and steelhead.

Thank you for speaking up for ODFW’s Water Program!

Read the full ODFW Budget SB 5509 here.

See relevant ODFW budget documents here.