(a) Any person, whether or not an applicant, permittee, or licensee under provisions of this division other than this chapter, who has an urgent need to divert and use water may apply for, and the board may issue, a conditional, temporary permit without complying with other procedures or provisions of this division, but subject to all requirements of this chapter.
(b) Prior to issuing a permit pursuant to this chapter, the board shall make all of the following findings:
(1) The applicant has an urgent need for the water proposed to be diverted and used.
(2) The water may be diverted and used without injury to any lawful user of water.
(3) The water may be diverted and used without unreasonable effect upon fish, wildlife, or other instream beneficial uses.
(4) The proposed diversion and use are in the public interest, including findings to support permit conditions imposed to ensure that the water is diverted and used in the public interest, without injury to any lawful user of water, and without unreasonable effect upon fish, wildlife, and other instream beneficial uses.
(c) “Urgent need,” for the purposes of this chapter, means the existence of circumstances from which the board may in its judgment conclude that the proposed temporary diversion and use is necessary to further the constitutional policy that the water resources of the state be put to beneficial use to the fullest extent of which they are capable and that waste of water be prevented; except that the board shall not find an applicant's need to be urgent if the board in its judgment concludes, if applicable, that the applicant has not exercised due diligence either (1) in making application for a permit pursuant to provisions of this division other than this chapter, or (2) in pursuing that application to permit.
(d) The board may delegate to any officer or employee of the board all or any of its functions under this chapter.
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