Community Water Center

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

Central Valley and State Water Boards Adopt New Funding for Disadvantaged Communities

Through our policy advocacy efforts, CWC has called for new funding sources to fill the needs of communities struggling to afford sustainable water solutions. Since April, two new sources of funding were approved by the State Water Resources Control Board and the Central Valley Regional Water Board specifically to serve disadvantaged communities including those without a centralized community water system. This funding is critical to providing communities access immediate sources of safe water, conduct water quality monitoring, rehabilitate and replace unsafe private wells, and conduct public education initiatives.

Read more about these two funding sources below:

Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board

April 10, 2014

For Immediate Release:

With the aim of helping disadvantaged communities, the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board has adopted a resolution establishing a list of 14 pre-approved Supplemental Environmental Projects (SEPs) that may be used to satisfy part of administrative civil liabilities imposed by the Water Board.

The approved projects were selected from a group of 27 applications, and were chosen, at least in part, because of their benefits to disadvantaged communities, their degree of community support, and their degree of community involvement.

This action benefits disadvantaged communities in the Central Valley in such areas as water quality monitoring programs; well rehabilitation or replacement; watershed assessment programs; wetland, water body, or riparian habitat conservation or protection programs; pollution prevention projects, and public awareness projects.

The resolution evolved from the Central Valley Water Board’s intention to foster more SEP projects within the Central Valley. The Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment was selected by the Board to act as a third-party oversight group to administer the SEP funds for these projects. The partnership with the Rose Foundation was developed through meetings with environmental justice groups that work within the Central Valley. The Rose Foundation has more than 20 years of experience managing federal Clean Water Act SEP funds, and has awarded 275 grants to community-based projects in the Central Valley. As a condition of the Resolution, the Rose Foundation will provide an annual report to the Central Valley Water Board documenting the projects that have been funded as a result of this program.

“The Board encourages the use of SEPs and believes the use of viable third party arrangements, such as the Rose Foundation, will help promote the use of SEPs during our settlement negotiations of administrative civil penalties,” said Pamela Creedon, Executive Officer of the Central Valley Water Board. “The approval of the current list of projects provides a tremendous opportunity to use SEPs that will benefit the environment and disadvantaged communities in the Central Valley.”

The Central Valley Water Board hopes to expand the list of pre-approved projects managed by third parties to include additional projects associated with disadvantaged communities as well as other types of applicable projects that meet the requirements contained in the Statewide Policy for Supplemental Environmental Projects.

This Resolution, including the Rose Foundation’s proposal, and the Pre-Approved Projects can be found here.

Additional information about SEPs in the Central Valley Region, including other projects that have been previously approved, can be found here.

The Central Valley Water Board is a California state agency responsible for the preservation and enhancement of quality in water resources.


State Water Resources Control Board

April 25, 2014

To All Interested Parties:

The State Water Resources Control Board has approved $4 million in funding to provide interim replacement drinking water for economically disadvantaged communities with contaminated water supplies (see attached Media Release). The funding became available through flexibility allowed in recently-signed drought legislation to ensure communities in need can apply for, and receive interim replacement drinking water. The funding comes from the State Water Board’s Cleanup and Abatement Account.

Eligible applicants include public agencies, not-for-profit water districts, not-for-profit organizations, and tribal governments. Eligible projects include, but are not limited to, bottled water, vending machines, point of use devices, hauled water, wellhead treatment, and planning. The funding must be encumbered by June 30, 2015.

For further funding information, eligibility requirements, and how to apply, please visit

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