Navy to Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority: Groundwater ‘No. 1 encroachment issue’

“The Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority meeting Thursday ended on a surprise note, when Commander Peter Benson delivered a letter from NAWS Commander Captain Paul Dale. Benson is the non-voting member representing the Department of the Navy on the groundwater authority board.

Dated Feb. 20, 2019, and addressed to the Indian Wells Valley Ground Water Authority Board of Directors, the letter states that it is intended as a formal communication that “Commander Navy Region Southwest (CNRSW), in consultation with U.S. Navy commands located within the Indian Wells Valley, deems groundwater resources as the number one encroachment concern/issue which has the potential to impact missions enabled on and around Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake.”

It goes on to state that “Water sustainability is critical to NAWSCL’s mission accomplishment.” … ”

Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Navy to Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority: Groundwater ‘No. 1 encroachment issue’

No budget approved, Navy weighs in at IWV Groundwater Authority meeting:

“The Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority met at City Hall on Thursday morning, first with an hour-long closed session meeting, covering potential litigation, followed by a five-hour regular meeting.

The 2019 IWVGA budget was not approved, after several board members and a handful of residents voiced their concerns over the presentation.  For starters, the budget that was presented was different from the one that was in the packet. A handful of numbers had been updated, including the total revenue (pump fee revenue and stressed counties grant revenue reimbursements) as well as a couple of lines in the expenditures section. … ”

Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  No budget approved, Navy weighs in at IWV Groundwater Authority meeting

Well monitoring tech offered to Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority

From the Ridgecrest News Review:

The Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority has continually discussed its need for additional well data needed to draft an adequate Groundwater Sustain-ability Plan for IWV pumpers. Recently, the Authority heard a brief presentation from Lee Knudtson of Wellntell, who offered an opportunity to upgrade the Authority’s well-monitoring capabilities.

“We’ve invented a tool for monitoring water levels and pumping activity from domestic wells and small ag wells,” said Knudtson. “Several federal and state agencies have adopted our technologies because they’re easy to use and less expensive.”

To continue reading at the Ridgecrest News & Review, click here:  Well monitoring tech offered to Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority

With the clock running for SGMA, Indian Wells Valley Water District’s workshop plans and prepares

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

“The Groundwater Authority has a little over a year left to create the Groundwater Sustainability Plan, and the Indian Wells Valley Water District is doing everything it can to ensure that happens.  The IWV Water District had its first workshop of the year on Wednesday morning, where future plans and goals of the water district were discussed.

The main objective was to ensure that every decision and action that the water district makes is in tune with what the GA is trying to achieve.  “I want to make sure that the GSP reflects our inputs,” director Stan Rajtora said. … ”

Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  With the clock running for SGMA, Indian Wells Valley Water District’s workshop plans and prepares

Update on Owens Valley Groundwater Authority

From the Sierra Wave:

“The scope of the Owens River basin’s sustainability plan became clearer following a presentation by DBS&A’s Tony Martin at last Thursday’s meeting of the Owens Valley Groundwater Authority.  The consulting firm’s tasks include compiling data, developing a timeline and stakeholder outreach plan and pulling together ecosystem data.

The key, it seems, is setting objectives (best case scenarios) and thresholds (worst case) with enough of a spread to keep the Authority from violating its own plan but still get the plan approved by the state Department of Water Resources.

According to Martin, the OVGA can set area-specific criteria, important in light of the diversity of the water demands on the basin. … “

Read more from the Sierra Wave here:  Update on Owens Valley Groundwater Authority

Indian Wells Valley: Groundwater Authority committees meet for first time in 2019

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

The Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority Technical Advisory and Policy Advisory committees met Thursday at the Indian Wells Valley Water District boardroom.  Special Legal Counsel Jim Markman was present during both meetings, though he mainly spoke and gave updates on the pumping and allocation process during the first portion of the PAC meeting.

Markman discussed his encounters and experience up until this point with other legal counsel involved in a handful of successful water negotiations in California, all of which had different scenarios and factors to them to show the possible solutions and outcomes to the committee. … ”

Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Indian Wells Valley: Groundwater Authority committees meet for first time in 2019

Antelope Valley: Watermaster staff cuts near?

From the Antelope Valley Press:

“The Antelope Valley Watermaster, the body tasked with overseeing the 2015 court settlement that set limits on groundwater pumping for users across the Valley, will look to reduce administrative costs in the coming year by shifting some of the work to staff from the con­tract­ed watermaster engineer, now that procedures are in place to make some matters more or less routine.

On Wednesday, the watermaster board accepted a proposal put forth by the Antelope Valley-East Kern Water Agency, the Palmdale Water District and the Quartz Hill Water District to provide administrative services for the coming year for a proposed $108,901. … “

Read more from the Antelope Valley Press here:  Antelope Valley: Watermaster staff cuts near?

Report from the Owens Valley Groundwater Authority meeting

From the Sierra Wave:

“As if Fred Stump didn’t make his position on specific groups joining the Owens Valley Groundwater Authority board as voting members clear enough at last month’s meeting, the Mono County Supervisor doubled down Monday afternoon, objecting on ethical terms.

“This is an ethical issue,” he said at the end of a discussion on letters to be sent to potential associate members and interested parties in order to gauge interest. “I’m against votes for government agencies, businesses and special interest groups,” he said. “I want to take the decision on voting (privileges) back to our individual boards.” … ”

Read more from the Sierra Wave here:  Report from the Owens Valley Groundwater Authority meeting

Indian Wells Valley: Johnson cites aggressive schedule for GSP development

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

“With a tightening deadline to submit a groundwater sustainability plan to the state, the IWV Groundwater Authority’s water resources manager plans to move more aggressively in the development process.  Steve Johnson, the water resources manager and Stetson Engineers, Inc. president, highlighted that fact Thursday during the Groundwater Authority’s board meeting.

Johnson said that given the Groundwater Authority’s tight timeline to complete and submit the sustainability plan, Stetson Engineers will be pursuing an aggressive schedule to get components done. … ”

Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Indian Wells Valley: Johnson cites aggressive schedule for GSP development

Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority talk health and safety, imported water

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

“Health and safety concerns became a topic of discussion at Thursday’s Indian Wells Valley Groundwater board meeting when Ridgecrest resident Nick Panzer broached the subject.  Speaking during public comment, Panzer presented a letter to board addressing possible water allocations down the road as the Groundwater Authority prepares its sustainability plan.

“We must end overdraft in our basin,” Panzer said. “That means we must reduce pumping from about 28,000 acre feet a year to about 7,000 acre-feet per year.” … ”

Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority talk health and safety, imported water