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The water system on the island consists of two wells, a desalinization plant, a concrete storage tank and the distribution pipe system.

Each lot has a connection point with a shutoff valve. The valve must be closed whenever you are off the island for more than 24 hours. A closed valve insures that a leak within a property owner’s plumbing will not drain the Island’s water system. Most major water losses have occurred when an owner has left the Island without closing the valve and freezing or defective plumbing has sprung a leak that goes unmonitored long enough to cause a significant spill.

Water use in excess of 150 gallons a day during occupancy, or water loss from a spill due to failing to properly close the valve when leaving the Island, is subject to a $.10 a gallon fine.

The island water system is a Group A Public Water System regulated by the Washington State Department of EnvironmentalHealth, Office of Drinking Water.

Water sources

The island has two operating wells, located in the south portion of the 70 acre common land that makes up the Island’s center. A desalinization plant was added to the Island’s water resource in 2008. The desalinization plant is on the lot above the West Dock and draws water off the dockend. 

Currently, the strategy is to run the desalinization plant only during the summer months when water use overall is at its maximum. The aim is to avoid stressing the wells and increasing the threat of salt-water intrusion, always a danger in an island setting. With the wells and the desalinization plant, the Island has been approved by the state to grant forty two water certificates, thirty of which are currently active.

Storage Tank

In the summer of 2003 an old wooden water tank was replaced with a 20x25 foot, 58,700 gallon concrete tank. The water tank is located on the community property across from lot 39. The new tank is large enough to meet the storage requirements for the full 48 water hookups.

Connection Points

Each lot has a connection point with a shutoff valve. To find yours look near the road for a white plastic cap about 6 inches in diameter and a red metal fencepost driven in upside down. The plastic cap covers a pipe which contains the original shutoff, a ball valve, for your lot, possibly buried in sawdust to protect if from freezing. When you start to build and pay the connection fee, a water meter will be installed. The water meter box itself has a shut-off valve within it and once the water meter has been installed, you should use that shut-off valve at the meter. The ball valves under the plastic caps are now over forty years old and many have begun to leak.

Those who have not built but camp on their property can install a standpipe for occasional use (filling water jugs, etc.) The connection point is a 1 inch, female, threaded PVC pipe. Dig down carefully near the white cap until you find the pipe.

The community adopted the following Water Resolution at the Annual Meeting in 2004:

Water Resolution Amended May 12, 2004:

At a duly called annual meeting of the Obstruction Island Club on May 12, 2004, the membership of OIC adopted the following AMENDED WATER RESOLUTION:

Water conservation is required on Obstruction Island.Property owners will abide by each of the following restrictions.

1. Declaration of Water Protection. Our current real estate covenants provide that there is to be no development or construction of other than community services within the 56-acre Central Park on Obstruction Island within which both of our operating wells are located. In addition to those inherent restrictions, there shall be an additional assurance of at least a 100-foot radius protection area around each well to keep them free of any impurities. In addition to existing covenants, there shall be no development of any nature whatsoever within this radius in order that said wells shall maintain their natural state.

2. A homeowner’s water supply must be shut off at the meter when the home is unoccupied for more than one day. Landowners with stand pipes must detach any hoses when the property is unoccupied. A fine, of up to $50, may be imposed by the Board if a homeowner continues to violate this requirement after having received written notice of prior violation. A fine of up to $25, in addition to the excess water fee of 10 cents a gallon, may be imposed by the Board if significant loss of water occurs because of such violation.

3. Meter readings are taken at least weekly during the summer months and monthly in the winter by the Water Master. Additionally, each homeowner will record meter readings at the beginning and end of their stay on the island.

4. Maximum usage of 150 gallons per day of occupancy is imposed on the island. Over consumption pushes the limit of the system infrastructure causing excessive wear and tear. Use in excess of an average of 150 gallons for each day of occupancy per stay will be billed to the owner at a rate of $0.10 per gallon.

5. A homeowner can request additional water beyond their allocated 150-gallons per day of occupancy for a special purpose such as pressure washing or filling of a hot tub. The Water Master will consider such a request based on available water in the storage tank and the overall demand on the wells. Such use or requests for use of excess water will be discouraged from April through October of any year.

Water Certificates

A water certificate is required by the county as part of the application for a building permit. Water certificates are issued by on a first-come, first-served basis. The current policy for securing a water certificate is as follows:

Water Availability Certificate Resolution

Adopted OIC Board of Directors, 2004
Revised,  September, 2009          

RESOLVED, that the OI Club issue and govern Water Availability Certificates  (CERTIFICATE) for the OIC water system using the following procedure:

A LIMIT of one CERTIFICATE for each property may be authorized.

 A property owner (OWNER) requesting a CERTIFICATE shall notify the OIC Board Secretary.  If there is a waiting list the Secretary will add the OWNER name to the bottom of this list.   When a system hook-up is available, as permitted by the WA State DOH, the Secretary will offer a CERTIFICATE to the first OWNER on the list.  

The OWNER has 30 days to notify the Secretary that they accept the CERTIFICATE.

If OWNER chooses to accept, the Board President and Secretary will sign and date the CERTIFICATE.  If OWNER declines or does not respond within 30 days the offer will be withdrawn and the CIRTIFICATE will be offered to the next OWNER on the list.      

 A hook-up fee (currently $ 3,500.) established by the OIC Board of Directors, and in accordance with the 1998 Water Hook-up Fee Resolution, must be paid before the CERTIFICATE will be issued.  The fee is sent to the OIC Treasurer for deposit to the Water Certificate Reserve Account. 

 A CERTIFICATE is refundable only under the following conditions:  (1) An OWNER may request a refund when a significant circumstantial change prevents going ahead with the construction.  (2) A CERTIFICATE may be revoked by the OIC Board if the first inspection by County officials, pursuant to such building permit, is not completed within two years from the CERTIFICATE issue date.  If a CERTIFICATE is revoked the OWNER is entitled to a full refund of the amount paid. 

  A CERTIFICATE  does not run with the title upon the sale of a property.  To retain the CERTIFICATE a buyer must pay a transfer fee equal to the current hook-up fee.  

 All communications between the OIC Board and OWNER, pursuant to this policy, shall be in writing (including email) and shall require a written confirmation of receipt. This resolution is in effect September, 30th  2009 and is not retroactive to prior situations.  


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