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Public Interest Law Project

Karen Long

October 10, 2011

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Waterwatch of Oregon

Waterwatch of Oregon, Portland, OR

WaterWatch of Oregon is an environmental nonprofit located in Portland that seeks to protect and restore natural stream flows in Oregon rivers in order to sustain the native fish, wildlife, and people who depend on healthy rivers.  WaterWatch works in the legislature, the courts, and with state and federal agencies to protect Oregon’s rivers. 

I worked directly with WaterWatch’s attorneys on various projects that dealt with state water law and policy, as well as Oregon administrative law.  I helped work on two contested cases by performing research related to the cases, preparing exhibits, and writing public records requests.  I also traveled to Salem to attend prehearing conferences and issues meetings with opposing counsel, and had the opportunity to attend the trial in Salem and assist the attorney working on the case. 

In addition to writing memos and working on the contested cases, I traveled to Salem to attend the Water Resources Commission meeting which provided a new perspective on Oregon water law.  I also wrote an appeal to a Water Management and Conservation Plan (WMCP), which is a plan required by the Oregon Administrative Rules for major water users.  The appeal produced real results when the entity decided to change its WMCP based on my comments.  Further, I had the opportunity to attend various internal meetings, which allowed me to learn more about how a nonprofit law firm functions.

I am thankful to PILP and WaterWatch for this tremendous opportunity and learning experience. The work WaterWatch directly affects all of us in Oregon, and I am fortunate for the chance to work alongside its wonderful attorneys and staff.

 

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