Community Water Center

Community-driven water solutions through organizing, education, and advocacy

August 2018 CWLN Newsletter

Don’t miss our next Network Briefing:
Thursday, September 27th from 4-5PM  

As a reminder, there’s no briefing call this month and our next call is in September. Network “briefings” are monthly conference calls that provide members the opportunity to connect with each other, crowd-source questions, and receive information from the comfort of their own homes. To join, dial (929) 432-4463, when prompted, enter the access code 5254-59-7515 followed by the pound key (#). Let Adriana know if you need a prepaid calling card in order to call long-distance.


Local Water Board Elections

August 10th was the last day to file to be a candidate in a local water board election. After the official filing period ends, if there are any offices where the incumbent did not file for candidacy, those seats enter into a candidate filing extension period. This filing extension period took place from August 10th until August 15th. During this period all seats where the incumbent didn’t file are open for other potential candidates to continue submitting their filing candidacy.  

 

For those leaders that were not able to file during the official candidate filing window or the filing extension, there is one last opportunity to file to be a candidate. From September 10th until October 23rd, community leaders can file to become write-in candidates.  Write-in candidates must go through the same filing process to become candidates except for their name will not be added to the ballot and they will have to let their community know to write in their name. If you know of any community leaders that missed the official filing window, please connect them with Adriana so they can learn more about the write-in candidate process.

 

Several community leaders took the next step to make a difference in their community and filed for candidacy in their local water board elections.  As of now, the Tulare County water districts that are having elections and are on this November ballot are: Poplar Community Services District, Yettem/Seville Community Services District, Richgrove Community Services District, Strathmore Public Utilities District, Earlimart Public Utilities District, Terra Bella Irrigation District, Lower Tule River Irrigation District, and Alpaugh Irrigation District.

 

There are also many community members that filed to join their water board and since no one filed to run for the same position as them, those water board seats are considered uncontested. When a seat is uncontested, the election does not make it to the ballot and the person who filed automatically joins the water board. Those community members that are new to their local water board are encouraged to apply to join the Community Water Leaders Network to receive ongoing support in their new roles.

 

Community Water Center is accepting applications from water decision makers to join CWLN, so please share the application with your new fellow board members or with board members who you think would benefit from joining this network!

 


Community Water Center is hiring a Community Organizer and a Program Associate for our new Central Coast Office

 

Community Organizer— The Community Organizer position is a regular, full-time, exempt employee position that will be primarily responsible for conducting CWC’s organizing and base-building work in communities in the Northern Central Coast Region (primarily Monterey, Santa Cruz, San Benito counties and parts of Santa Clara County). This position will report directly to the CWC Director of Organizing, Erica Fernandez Zamora and will work closely with other CWC staff, community partners and allies. If you have any questions, please contact Erica Fernandez at erica.fernandez@communitywatercenter.org.

 

Program Associate— The Program Associate is a regular, full-time, non-exempt, at-will employee position that will be primarily responsible for providing administrative and program support for the Central Coast Office. The Program Associate will report directly to the Community Solutions Director, Heather Lukacs. If you have any questions, please contact Heather Lukacs at heather.lukacs@communitywatercenter.org.

 

If you or someone you know is interested in applying, visit our website to access both of the application: https://www.communitywatercenter.org/careers.


Community Water Center is hiring canvassers for a Civic Engagement Project

Community Water Center is launching a campaign to engage thousands of voters in Tulare County this fall to ensure safe and affordable drinking water for all. We are looking for motivated individuals who desire to help transform their community and region. This is a 10-20 day campaign from early October to early November. The team will work five days per week (tentatively Wednesday through Friday from 3:30pm-8:30pm, and Saturdays and Sundays, when the team will work from 11:00am to 4:00pm). The days worked are subject to change depending on campaign’s progress and goals. This is a temporary, part-time, hourly position primarily responsible for contacting thousands of voters through daily phone banking and door-to-door canvassing to potential voters. The campaign is designed to talk on the phone and face-to-face with voters to identify voters supportive of water justice and build support for campaigns that would ensure safe, affordable drinking water for all. If you have any questions, please contact Karina Gallardo at Karina.Gallardo@communitywatercenter.org.

 

If you or someone you know is interested in applying, visit our website to access the application: https://www.communitywatercenter.org/community_outreach_canvasser_2018.

 


Save the date for Somos el Poder y el Cambio—  We are the Power and the Change!

WHEN: October 11, 2018 at 5:30pm

WHERE: Café 210  210 W Center Ave, Visalia, CA 93291


State/Legislative updates

Updates on the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund

 

The Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund that was originally introduced as Senate Bill 623 and was reintroduced on Friday, August 17th as Senate Bill 844 and Senate Bill 845. Senator Monning authored both bills along with Senator Vidak as co-author. The structure of the funding has changed and here's a quick summary of the two bills:

Senate Bill 844-- Agriculture and dairies will pay a fee for fertilizer that will go towards addressing nitrate contamination. This part of the package has remained the same except for an increase in the fertilizer fee. This part of the package still requires a 2/3 vote.

 

Senate Bill 845-- Originally the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund (SB 623) included a safe drinking water fee of $0.95 per month for all water users except low-income households. SB 845 changes the mandatory requirement and instead creates a voluntary program where water users can choose to opt out of a $1/month safe drinking water fee. This part of the package requires a majority vote.

 

If both of these bills pass, this package of safe drinking water legislation will help ensure universal access to safe drinking water in California. Over 140 organizations have been working hard to push our representatives to pass this important bill package. Community members, allies, and Community Water Center staff went to the capitol on Tuesday to lobby with legislators and raise awareness about California’s drinking water crisis. Laurel and Susana also authored an Opinion piece that ran in the New York Times to urge lawmakers to support this solution. We have until the end of August to get the votes needed to pass this bill package and we will continue to push our representatives to act. Thank you for all your efforts to support this fund and we will keep you all updated as things progress.  

 


Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) updates

Save the dates for two upcoming SGMA workshops! The Community Water Center, the Union of Concerned Scientists, Self Help Enterprises, and Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability will be hosting two workshops on groundwater management in October. These workshops are being funded through a Department of Water Resources (DWR) SGMA grant. More information on these special events below:

 


Groundwater Quality in the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) CWLN Roundtable

DATE: Wednesday, October 10th, 2018

TIME: 5:00PM--7:30PM

LOCATION: Cafe 210, 210 W. Center Ave. (corner of Center and Locust), Visalia, CA 93291

 

Groundwater Sustainability Agencies (GSAs) are currently developing plans, Groundwater Sustainability Plans (GSPs), that will outline how groundwater resources will be managed locally. As part of developing their plans, the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) requires GSAs to address how they will avoid six undesirable results.  This roundtable will focus on the undesirable result of the “significant and unreasonable degradation of groundwater quality.”

 

At this roundtable, state representatives will speak on how regulatory programs like SGMA and CV SALTS are interconnected and how GSAs can develop robust plans that complement other regulatory frameworks. Researchers will be sharing information about how groundwater pumping and groundwater recharge influence the geochemistry of the aquifer, changes in groundwater quality, and recommendations for GSAs how to proactively plan or address these concerns. And lastly, representatives from local water districts will be sharing the groundwater quality remediation projects their water district is implementing. We hope to see you join our conversation!

 


Groundwater Sustainability Planning Workshop 2.0

DATE: Saturday, October 27th, 2018

TIME: TBD (will be a half day workshop, possibly 10:00AM— 3:30PM)

LOCATION: TBD

 

This workshop on October 27th is a continuation of the Groundwater Sustainability Planning workshops that CWLN hosted in 2017. This half-day workshop, will feature a series of presentations and interactive  exercises that will help participants better understand and engage in the creation of Groundwater Sustainability Plans. The topics will focus on understanding water budgets, developing sustainability criteria, and management actions and projects. The details on the time and location are still being finalized so in the meantime, please place a save the date on your calendar.

 

If you have any questions about these two workshops, please contact Adriana Renteria at adriana.renteria@communitywatercenter.org or 559-733-0219.

 


Local Groundwater Sustainability Agency (GSA) updates

 

East Kaweah GSA

Earlier this month the East Kaweah GSA, in collaboration with CWC,  Self Help Enterprises, and Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability, hosted two community outreach meetings in Exeter and Lindsay. At these two workshops participants learned about SGMA, their GSA, as well as went over the Kaweah Subbasin’s draft water budget.

 

A water budget is a tool that helps GSAs understand the basin’s groundwater conditions and can help estimate the sustainable yield, which is the amount of groundwater that can be used without causing an undesirable result. The draft water budget for the Kaweah Subbasin includes inflows (water coming into the basin) of the following categories:

  1. irrigation return flows- the amount of groundwater that is returned to the groundwater aquifer after crops are irrigated
  2. conveyance percolation- the amount of groundwater that seeps through the canals and enters the groundwater aquifer
  3. Precipitation- the amount of rain that sinks through the ground and enters the groundwater aquifer
  4. Natural channel- the amount of water that seeps through rivers and streams and enters into the groundwater aquifer
  5. Recharge programs- there are several projects in the GSA where water is manually applied to a recharge basin. These recharge basins collect water either from storms/flooding or from surface water supplies from irrigation districts and the goal is to have the water percolate and sink into the groundwater aquifer to fill the aquifer up.

 

These numbers are still in draft form and were extrapolated from the data collected by the Water Resources Investigation. GEI is the consultant developing the water budget at the subbasin level and Provost and Pritchard is working to better understand the conditions at the local GSA level. The water budget is anticipated to be finalized in October. The draft hydrologic conceptual model (HCM) is anticipated to be finalized in November. The hydrologic conceptual model takes information from the water budget, as well as historical water information, and can be used to simulate how things may change in the future taking into consideration climate change, population growth, and land use changes.

 

The East Kaweah GSA has developed a survey and is asking for stakeholders to share their feedback. If you or someone you know live in the communities of: Tooleville, Tonyville, El Rancho, Lindsay, Plainview, or Strathmore, you can access the survey in English here and Spanish here. You may also contact the East Kaweah GSA directly by emailing mhagman@lindmoreid.com, calling (559) 303-4150 or visiting the website www.ekgsa.org.

 

East Kaweah GSA meeting schedule:

  • Board meeting: fourth Monday of January, April, July, and October at 3PM at the Exeter Historical Museum.
  • Advisory Committee meeting: third Monday of every month at 4PM at Exeter Historical Museum.
  • Technical Advisory Committee meeting: first Friday of every month at 10AM at Provost & Pritchard Office in Visalia, CA.  

 

Kings River East GSA

The Kings Subbasin has almost completed an analysis that is estimating the total overdraft of the basin. Overdraft occurs when there is more water that is being taken out of the basin than is being replaced.  Provost & Pritchard Consulting Group are the consultants that are developing that estimate and once they quantify the total of the basin they will divide that value amongst the seven GSAs in the Kings subbasin. At the subbasin level, the GSAs are finalizing their data sharing agreement that will outline how the GSAs will share information about water entering and exiting their GSAs inorder for each GSA to better understand the groundwater conditions of their area. Kings River East GSA has started invoicing landowners who are pumping groundwater. These fees are collected based on groundwater usage and they are being used to pay for the development of the Groundwater Sustainability Plans. Once the plan is developed the GSA will also develop a funding strategy for how they will pay for management actions and projects.

Kings River East GSA meeting schedule:

  • Board meeting: 3rd Thursday of every month at 2PM at: City of Dinuba, High Council Chambers – 405 East El Monte Avenue, Dinuba, CA 93618.
  • Advisory Committee meeting: every two months on the 3rd Wednesday of the month at 3:30PM at Alta Irrigation District Building, 289 N L St, Dinuba, CA 93618, USA.
  • Technical Advisory Committee meeting: 3rd Thursday of every month at 10AM at the Alta Irrigation District Building, 289 N L St, Dinuba, CA 93618, USA.

 

Lower Tule River Irrigation District (LTRID) GSA & Pixley Irrigation District (PID) GSA

The Lower Tule ID GSA and Pixley ID GSA have developed six draft groundwater sustainability plan chapters. These chapters are still preliminary chapters and provide an outline on different topics ranging from how the GSA will measure water imported into the basin, how groundwater credits will be issued to landowners, how landowners will be able to transfer groundwater credits amongst each other, and how landowners will be allocated additional groundwater credits for developing recharge projects. To read these draft chapter outlines, visit the two GSAs’ website: http://www.ltrid.org/sgma/

 

Lower Tule ID GSA and Pixley ID GSA meeting schedule:

  • Lower Tule ID GSA board meeting: 2nd Tuesday of the month at 9AM at Lower Tule River Irrigation, 357 E Olive Ave, Tipton, CA 93272, USA.
  • Pixley ID GSA board meeting: 1st Thursday of the month at 9AM at Lower Tule River Irrigation, 357 E Olive Ave, Tipton, CA 93272, USA.
  • Groundwater Planning Committee (GPC) meeting: combined planning meeting of the two GSAs. 4th Tuesday of every month at 10 AM at the Lower Tule River Irrigation, 357 E Olive Ave, Tipton, CA 93272, USA.

 

Eastern Tule GSA

The Eastern Tule GSA (ETGSA) officially hired an Executive Director. Bryce McAteer worked with Mike Young prior to being hired by the ETGSA in July as their new permanent Executive Director.  

 

The ETGSA has begun the process of drafting a Communication and Engagement Plan, which they hope to discuss at their next meeting of the Board of Directors on  Sept 6, 2018. This document is required of all GSAs, and will outline how the GSA will conduct outreach to stakeholders in their GSA and list all the opportunities for public participation. They have also created a master calendar of meetings, which can be accessed on their website (here), and are working on finalizing a section-by-section schedule for completion of their Draft GSP by the intended completion date of April 2019.

 

If you would like to sign up as an interested party and receive updates, event invitations, meeting agendas, meeting packets, notices regarding plan preparation and the availability of draft plans, and other relevant information regarding ETGSA and its developments, sign up here.

Additionally, The Eastern Tule GSA has developed a survey as is asking for stakeholders to share their feedback. If you or someone you know live in the communities of Porterville, Terra Bella, Ducor, or Richgrove, you can access the survey here. You may also contact the Eastern Tule GSA directly by emailing  bmcateer@easterntulegsa.com, or visiting the website http://easterntulegsa.com/.

 

Eastern Tule GSA meeting schedule:

  • Board meeting: 1st Thursday of every month at 2PM at: City of Porterville, Council Chambers, 291 N. Main St. Porterville, 93257.
  • Stakeholder Committee meeting: 2nd Thursday of every month at 2PM, location changed to City of Porterville Transit Multi Purpose Conference Room, 15 E Thurman Ave, Suite D, Porterville, 93257
  • Executive Committee meeting: 3rd Thursday of every month at 2PM, location changed to City of Porterville Transit Multi Purpose Conference Room, 15 E Thurman Ave, Suite D, Porterville, 93257

Featured Resource of the Month:

Spanish translations of the SGMA regulations and Communications and Engagement Plan  

The Department of Water Resources (DWR) recently released Spanish translations of two documents that are important for the implementation of the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA). The first document that was translated is the Groundwater Sustainability Plan Emergency Regulations Guide. This document was written to explain the regulations and requirements for implementing the four phases of the law which are: 1) forming Groundwater Sustainability Agencies, 2) developing Groundwater Sustainability Plans, 3) revising and evaluating the plan, 4) implementing the plan.

 

The other document that was translated was the Stakeholder Communication and Engagement guidance document. This document was created to provide guidance to GSA’s to develop their Communications and Engagement plans. GSAs are required to create a document that outlines how they will conduct outreach to stakeholders in their GSA and list all the opportunities for public participation.

 

Both of these documents are really important in understanding how SGMA will be implemented and in understanding how GSAs should be outreaching to stakeholders and creating opportunities for public participation. Please share these documents with members of your board or community members who speak Spanish and would benefit from learning more.

 


Upcoming events

 

DATE: August 28. TIME: 6-7PM. EVENT: Webinar: Water System Financial Management for California Board Members, Local Elected Officials, and System Owners.

LOCATION: Webinar. COST: Free.

EVENT DESCRIPTION: This webinar will provide an overview of key financial management best practices for small water system owners, board members, and local elected officials. We will discuss the fiscal responsibilities of water system leaders, budgeting best practices, and ways to measure and improve the overall financial health of the water system. You will also learn about how water systems can best use reserve accounts to improve their financial management. For more info: https://calmutuals.org/event/water-system-financial-management-for-california-board-members-local-elected-officials-and-system-owners/


DATE: August 29. TIME: 11AM-12PM.  EVENT: California's new conservation requirements: Coming to a theater near you?

LOCATION: Webinar: $40.00. COST: $40.

EVENT DESCRIPTION: The Association of California Water Agencies is hosting a webinar on the new water conservation bills that Governor Brown signed that require urban water providers to develop water use targets for their service area by 2022. For more info: https://www.acwa.com/events/webinar-californias-new-conservation-requirements-coming-to-a-theater-near-you/

 

DATE: September 10. TIME: 6-8PM. EVENT: AB 54 Webinar.

LOCATION: Webinar. COST: $99.

EVENT DESCRIPTION: AB-54 is a requirement for all Directors of Mutual Water Companies regardless of size. Our training meets the two-hour AB-54 Director Training Requirement. The specific law requires that each board member of a Mutual Water Company operated as a public water system to, within six months of taking office, complete a two-hour course offered by a qualified trainer. CRWA is a qualified accredited training organization, and will cover pertinent area’s relating to this law. AB-54 was signed into law and took effect January 2012. AB-54 is a requirement for all Directors of Mutual Water Companies regardless of size. For more info: https://calruralwater.org/product/ab-54-webinar-2/

DATE: October 2. TIME: 8:15-2:30PM. EVENT: Monitoring Land Subsidence in the San Joaquin Valley.

LOCATION: Alice Peters Auditorium (PB 191) in the University Business Center at Fresno State, COST: Free.

EVENT DESCRIPTION: This workshop will highlight ongoing land subsidence monitoring, monitoring techniques, the California Department of Water Resources' assistance for local agency SGMA compliance and will feature current results of satellite-based remote sensing monitoring. For more info: https://www.watereducation.org/foundation-event/monitoring-land-subsidence-san-joaquin-valley

 

DATE: October 31-November 1, 2018. EVENT: Water Treatment Certification Review (Grades 1- 2)

LOCATION: Location:Clarion Inn Conference Center, 1612 Sisk Rd., Modesto, CA 95350. COST: $350.

EVENT DESCRIPTION: California Rural Water Association (CRWA) is offering a series of two-day certification review classes designed to enhance operators’ working knowledge of water treatment. Classes include a pre-test and detailed instruction on the expected range of knowledge for water treatment operators and practice exams. This format refreshes operators on the many aspects of water treatment systems and helps sharpen their test-taking skills. For more info: https://calruralwater.org/product/water-treatment-certification-review-grades-1-2-2/

Like us to spread the word

Related News & Resources

September 2018 CWLN Newsletter

Don’t miss our next Network Briefing:Thursday, September 27th from 4-5PM   As a reminder, our next call is on September 27th. Network “briefings” are monthly conference calls that provide members...

July 2018 CWLN Newsletter

Don’t miss our next Network Briefing: Thursday, May 24th from 4-5PM   Network “briefings” are monthly conference calls that provide members the opportunity to connect with each other, crowd-source questions,...

May 2018 CWLN Newsletter

Don’t miss our next Network Briefing: Thursday, May 24th from 4-5PM   Network “briefings” are monthly conference calls that provide members the opportunity to connect with each other, crowd-source questions,...

April 2018 CWLN Newsletter

  Announcements Don’t miss our next Network Briefing:  Thursday, May 24th 4-5pm Network “briefings” are monthly conference calls that provide members the opportunity to connect with each other, crowd-source questions, and...

More News