Lessons learned from the State’s first Groundwater Sustainability Plan

“All eyes were on the Borrego Valley this spring, and not just for their second “super bloom” in two years.

The Borrego Valley GSA is the first in the state to release a full draft Groundwater Sustainability Plan; a new management framework required under 2014 legislation. Many are looking to the Borrego Valley GSP as a test case for the other 138 agencies currently drafting their plans, and the many stakeholders anxiously awaiting those plans. … ”

Continue reading from the Local Government Commission’s Livable Places newsletter here: Lessons Learned from the State’s first Groundwater Sustainability Plan

Agricultural water agencies refine efficiency plans

“Agricultural water suppliers must develop annual water budgets and drought plans that meet requirements of recently enacted legislation, and are meeting with state officials to comply with the updated law—a process that could ultimately affect water costs for California farmers and ranchers.

California Farm Bureau Federation Director of Water Resources Danny Merkley said the process stems from 2009 law, and updates passed last year, which require the state Department of Water Resources to consult with agricultural stakeholders to quantify water-use efficiency. … ”

Read more from Ag Alert here:  Agricultural water agencies refine efficiency plans

Legal alert: Irrigation District May Refuse Water Delivery to Rule Violators

“An irrigation district may adopt and enforce reasonable rules related to water service, and may terminate water delivery for failure to comply with such rules, a California appellate court ruled. Although this case involved an irrigation district, the decision may also strengthen other water providers’ authority to adopt and enforce rules relating to water service.

In Inzana v. Turlock Irrigation District Board of Directors, the issue was the District’s rule prohibiting planting “in, on, over, or across” any District easement or right of way in a manner that interferes with its maintenance or operation obligations. The District rules also say that the District can terminate water service to any landowner who fails or refuses to comply with any District rules or regulations. … ”

Read more from BB&K here:  Irrigation District May Refuse Water Delivery to Rule Violators

Glenn Groundwater Authority approves operation fee increase for water service

“On Monday the Glenn Groundwater Authority passed an operation fee increase for water service, despite meeting some opposition.  Anyone within the Glenn County portion of the Colusa subbasin except for Willows and Orland will have to pay the fee.

The board set the operation fee at $1.61 per acre, per year for the fiscal 2019-2020 year. … ”

Read more from Action News Now here: Glenn Groundwater Authority approves operation fee increase for water service

Market-based program would encourage farmers to buy, sell local groundwater

“A local water district is developing a novel, market-based groundwater trading program that, if successful, could be expanded or copied to help Central Valley farmers cope with new state restrictions against over-pumping the region’s aquifers.

The Rosedale-Rio Bravo Water Storage District’s pilot program, set for testing later this summer or early fall, would allow certain landowners to buy or sell groundwater to or from another property owner within the district. … ”

Read more from Bakersfield.com here: Market-based program would encourage farmers to buy, sell local groundwater

State distributes grants to help implement SGMA

“With some local agencies just months away from a deadline to complete groundwater management plans, local and state officials acknowledge there have been a few speed bumps in distributing grant funding for planning and implementation. But observers say they expect the grant process overall to benefit groups working to comply with provisions of the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act.

“There’s the old adage that there’s no free money; you take the bad with the good and the bad is, these processes always take longer,” Northern California Water Association President David Guy said. … ”

Continue reading at Ag Alert here: State distributes grants to help implement SGMA

Exeter: Groundwater Sustainability Agencies still unsure over monitoring, nearing draft sustainability plan

“Measuring the water beneath our feet takes technology that looks out of this world, and pictures that actually are.  As the deadline for sustainable groundwater plans draws near agencies in charge are looking to NASA, foreign governments and top universities to figure out how much groundwater we have and how much we can use.

California’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) was signed into law in 2014, it has been a mad dash to identify what is sustaabinle. Five years later, Greater Kaweah Groundwater Sustainability Agency (Greater Kaweah) general manager, Eric Osterling says that things are getting clearer as their Groundwater Sustainability Plan (GSP) comes into focus. … ”

Read more from the Foothills Sun Gazette here: Exeter: Groundwater Sustainability Agencies still unsure over monitoring, nearing draft sustainability plan

Kern County’s recharging basins come with a pesky price

“The recharging basins near Ming and Allen Rd. are filled with water. It’s a comforting reminder that we’ll be okay during the next drought, but with that security comes with a price.

“We have thousands of acres of surface water that can potentially breed mosquitoes,” Gene Abbott, the manager of Kern Mosquito and Vector Control (KMVC) said. … ”

Read more from Bakersfield.com here: Kern County’s recharging basins come with a pesky price

Indian Wells Valley: PAC discusses modeling scenarios

“The Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority Policy Advisory Committee talked more modeling scenarios during its May 6 meeting from its angle.

According to committee chair Dave Janiec, the IWVGA’s technical advisory committee received updates on the current three modeling scenarios being developed for groundwater pumping.  The scenarios reflect potential options of how the IWVGA could adopt once its groundwater sustainability plan is submitted to the Department of Water Resources.

The plan is currently being developed and is due by Jan. 31, 2020 as required under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act. … ”

Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Indian Wells Valley: PAC discusses modeling scenarios

DWR reverses Solano lowlands groundwater priority for now

“It appears Solano County and Vallejo have avoided a potentially costly state shift in the groundwater sustainability priority for the Napa-Sonoma Lowlands.  While the final decision by the Department of Water Resources has not been made, the state agency has for now backed off its proposal to increase the priority status from very low to medium for the lowlands.

“That would have required us, Napa County, possibly (the Solano County Water Agency), American Canyon and the city of Vallejo to form (Groundwater Sustainability Areas),” Misty Kaltreider, hydro-geological analyst for the Solano County Department of Resource Management, said in a phone interview. … ”

Read more from the Daily Republic here:  DWR reverses Solano lowlands groundwater priority for now