State ex rel. Gibson v. Superior Court

In State ex rel. Gibson v. Superior Court, 147 Wash. 520, 266 P. 198 (1928) several landowners challenged an adjudication of public use and necessity allowing others to acquire by condemnation a right of way for a pipeline to transport water to which they had a state-permitted right. At the outset we stated: They have acquired the right to take and divert from that point on the creek one cubic foot of water per second; this by permit duly issued to them by the state supervisor of hydraulics. So, their condemnation proceeding here on review is in no sense a seeking to acquire any water rights, but is alone a seeking to acquire the right of way in question. Gibson, 147 Wash. at 522. Even though these landowners held a certified water right, the court did not automatically conclude they were entitled to condemn a right of way for the pipeline. Instead, the Court examined the necessity of the landowners' use of the water and concluded, "the advantageous use of the water on the lands for domestic purposes clearly appears." Id. at 523. With regard to necessity, the Court observed: Burrowes' land has no fresh water upon it, and is almost surrounded by salt water. DeZemed's land has no fresh water upon it, other than a spring furnishing a quantity of fresh water so limited as to be insufficient for any practical purpose. The portion of the creek flowing the short distance across his land does not furnish him any fresh water supply thereon, by reason of the salt water tide coming into it there. Gibson, 147 Wash. at 521.