Brandon Bollinger joined Community Water Center in March of 2020. As the Organizing Manager based in Watsonville, Brandon will be responsible for leading CWC’s organizing and base-building programs and activities across the Central Coast.
Throughout his academic and professional career, Brandon has been involved in work around gender justice, human rights and community-based approaches to social change. He has worked on environmental education across schools in Monterey County, Human Rights and Environmental Justice issues in South America with Amnesty International’s Secretariat in Peru, and also served with the Peace Corps in Amazonas, Peru doing community based work around youth development and leadership building.
In 2016 he received his M.A. in Gender and Development from the Institute of Development Studies, and his BA in Sociology at Kenyon College.
Central Coast Office, (831) 288-0450
Following the release of California's 2019-2020 state budget proposal, Gov. Gavin Newsom brought cabinet members to the San Joaquin Valley, where many communities are afflicted with unsafe drinking water. He took to Twitter to announce what he was there for:
"Took my Cabinet on a surprise trip to the Central Valley to hear directly from folks who lack access to affordable, clean water.
Our first stop: we met with residents who cannot drink or bathe with the water in their homes"
While in Monterey Park Tract in Ceres, a community with several contaminated wells, Newsom spoke with local media outlets and had this to say:
"It's only day five or six of the administration, but look: the issue of safe drinking water, affordable drinking water, is top of mind ... We cannot continue to under-deliver to communities like this and thousands of others across the state."
View the full video of Newsom in Monterey Park Tract below.
Video Source: The Modesto Bee
Gavin Newsom in Stanislaus County to discuss state’s bad water
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In less than one week, we have the opportunity to make sure safe and affordable water remains a priority for California by choosing to elect people who will represent the needs of our communities. If we all cast our ballots next Tuesday, November 6th, our voices will be heard and we can continue to solve the state’s drinking water crisis once and for all.
Susana and Laurel
Last Monday, residents from East Orosi met with State Water Resources Control Board officials at a public meeting to discuss a proposed drinking water solution for their community. East Orosi, a small community located in rural Tulare County with nitrate-contaminated groundwater, has not had reliable access to safe drinking water for over 10 years. The State Water Board is proposing to use their authority to mandate a connection to the nearby larger community of Orosi in order to be able to provide safe water to East Orosi’s 700 residents. See coverage of the meeting from ABC 30 Fresno here.
This October, CWC co-hosted two workshops with the goal of helping local water decision makers create effective Groundwater Sustainability Plans for their communities.
On Wednesday October 10th, Community Water Center, Union of Concerned Scientists, Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability, and Self Help Enterprises hosted a roundtable on groundwater. Topics included regulations on groundwater quality, how groundwater levels are changing and the causes, and strategies to improve groundwater quality.
On Saturday October 27th, CWC alongside our partners above hosted a second roundtable focusing this time specifically on Groundwater Sustainability Planning and the tools needed for effective plans including understanding water budgets (i.e. how much water flows into and out of an area and how to plan for that).
See materials from both workshops here: https://www.communitywatercenter.org/sgma_engagement
Siena Rivera joins the Visalia office as a Program Assistant, helping the team with database management, office tasks and program work. Originally from Kingsburg, she is eager to help neighboring communities and families with accessibility to resources and to advocate and fight for clean water for all.
Chris Nong joins the Sacramento office as the Communications Intern, helping to create compelling communication tools and support internal communication systems..
Please join us in welcoming them both!
Martha, an elementary school student in San Diego, chose to honor CWC Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director Susana De Anda as a revolutionary for a class assignment.
Martha, a student at High Tech Elementary in San Diego, was inspired by learning that people around the world don’t have access to clean water. As a class project, she was assigned to write about someone she sees as a revolutionary. Choosing to focus on California’s drinking water fight, she chose to highlight CWC’s Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director Susana De Anda for her role in the water justice movement. See her short story on Susana here!
Featured speaker Daniel Peñaloza alongside CWC Co-Founders Laurel Firestone and Susana De Anda
Last Thursday, October 11th, Community Water Center held its annual community celebration event in Visalia, California: Somos el Poder y el Cambio / We are the Power and the Change. Filled with great food, live music, and inspiring speakers, the event drew nearly a hundred community members to attend the program. Staff encouraged attendees to register and vote in California's upcoming November election. It was a powerful night and we are thankful to all those that attended or helped to make the event possible! See photos from the night here.
And a special thank you to our sponsors! Thank you for helping to make this night possible.
Community Water Leaders: The California Endowment, Watermill Express
Community Water Friends: ACLU of Northern CA, Cultiva La Salud, EKI Environment & Water Inc., NextGen America, Policy Link, Proteus, Rural Community Assistance Corporation, US Water Alliance
Community Water Stars: Martha Davis, Restore Hetch Hetchy, Robins Borghei LLC, Weideman Group, Natural Resources Defense Council
Community Water Supporters: ACT for Women and Girls, Community Alliance for Agroecology, California League of Conservation Voters, Environmental Defense Fund, Family Healthcare Network, Kaweah Delta, PICO, Puronics Inc, Union of Concerned Scientists, Women's International League of Peace and Freedom, Tulare County Board of Supervisors
Complete job descriptions and more information on how to apply, please visit: https://www.communitywatercenter.org/careers.
Central Coast 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. If you have any questions, please contact Susana De Anda at email@example.com.
To see the latest from CWC and our community partners, check out our news coverage here.
RESOURCES AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
- $9.5 Million Available for Drinking Water in Schools which may be used to install water bottle filling stations or drinking water fountains, and for interim water supplies and treatment devices for schools where contamination is an issue. If your school or district is interested in learning more about this exciting new opportunity to improve student access to safe drinking water you can access the guidelines and application here or contact Kim Hanagan, State Water Resources Control Board at (916) 323-0624. Rural Community Assistance Corporation was selected by the State Water Resources Control Board to provide technical assistant during the grant application and implementation period. Contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- Funding available for water systems impacted by 1,2,3-TCP. On December 14, 2017, the State Water Board approved an early effective date for the maximum contaminant level (MCL) of contaminant 1,2,3-Trichloropropane (1,2,3-TCP). In order to obtain cost recovery for your impacted system, you need to obtain legal representation in order to sue the responsible parties, Shell and Dow Chemicals, for 1-2-3 TCP contamination. Litigation can take anywhere from a year to 3 or more years, so if you are impacted by 1-2-3 TCP and are in need of financial assistance to come into compliance with the new MCL, there are funding sources at the state available for eligible entities. The primary funding source is the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF), and the Prop 1 Groundwater Grant Fund is also a secondary option to cover instances where the DWSRF doesn’t cover. In order to qualify for state funding sources you will likely be required to show you are initiating efforts to recover costs from the responsible parties. For any questions, contact the State Water Resources Control Board.
- Do you know if your water is safe to drink? Check out our bilingual Water FAQ page to see what steps you can take to find out what is in the water coming out of your tap.
- Funding for Water and Energy Audits: Application and Instructions. More details on the CWSRF.
Huge thank you to our monthly donors, whose continual contributions help to sustain our long-term work toward achieving safe, clean and affordable drinking water for all Californians!
Amy Helfant, Anavel Valdez, Benigna Hernandez, Bill Walker, Bryan Barnhart, Carly Yoshida, Cassie Morgan, Edward Bergtholdt, Jill Ratner, Kavita Vora, Kelsey Hinton, Leonard Sklar, Nancy Bruce, Natalie Garcia-Grazier, Nimmi Damodaran, Paul Pierce, Renata Brillinger, Sandra Hocker, Vicki Woods
And thank you to our generous donors for the month of September!
Alex Porteshawver, Catherine Porter, Edward Bergtholdt, Hensley Peterson, Juanita Martinez, Katherine Panek, Lisa Friedman, Mary Burbery, Matt James, Paul Boyer, Susan Villere
If you would like to donate to CWC, please click here!
My name is Siena Rivera and I am the new Program Assistant for Community Water Center in Visalia.
I am originally from Kingsburg, California and am a recent graduate from Hope International University. There I earned a B.A. in Intercultural Studies and was the first one in my family to graduate from University. Unfortunately, some of my family has been personally affected by contaminated water. Now back in the Central Valley, I am eager to help neighboring communities and families with accessibility to resources and to advocate and fight for clean water for all.
I long to see change and am open to learn and gain more experience at CWC. I am very grateful to be apart of this dedicated team!
Visalia Office, (559) 733-0219
Community Advisory Committee
The Community Advisory Committee (CAC) is a group of impacted residents who provide input on our planning processes to make sure that we are planning strategically and with the community at the fore front.
Sandra Garcia – Poplar, CA
Raquel Sanchez – Tulare, CA
Becky Quintana – Seville, CA
Jesus Quevedo – Cutler, CA
Josefina G. Alvarado – Porterville, CA
Bartolo Chavez – Arvin, CA
Celerina Chavez – Arvin, CA
Lucy Hernandez – West Goshen, CA
Simona Magaña – Posos Privados/ Private Wells