Montecito Water District Plans to Increase Local, Reliable, Water Supplies

Monthly Board Meeting took place on Tuesday, May 16

(Montecito, California, May 16, 2017) Montecito Water District’s Board of Directors voted unanimously in favor of Resolution 2149, adopting the Urban Water Management Plan (Plan) 2015 update. Such Plans are mandated by the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) for use as a long-range planning tool covering a 20-year period in five year increments. The Plan also is designed to demonstrate an agency’s progress towards compliance with Senate Bill X7-7, which requires a 10% reduction in overall water consumption by 2015 and a 20% reduction by 2020. The analysis included in the Plan shows the District is in full compliance with the 2015 interim reduction target, and projections indicate achievement of full compliance in 2020.

Director Floyd Wicks articulated that the Plan accurately reflects the current direction of the District, which is to “Increase Local, Reliable, Water Supplies.” To that end, the Plan depicts an increase in local, “drought proof” water supplies, such as recycled water, desalination, and groundwater banking to improve drought resiliency.

Feedback from the Board and the public has been considered throughout Plan development, by way of Operations Committee meetings and Board meetings. During the Public Hearing held on May 16, 2017, Directors, District Staff, and District consultant Michael Baker International, the firm that helped prepare the Plan, responded to questions from the public and discussed elements of the Plan. All clarified that the Plan encompasses a multitude of District efforts that are well underway, and that it documents the District’s ongoing strategy and work, in addition to providing corresponding relevant data.

PLAN & PROJECT FUNDING

The District is currently acting on three potential funding opportunities that were also discussed during Tuesday’s meeting:

The first is an application for disaster relief funds available through the California Office of Emergency Management to cover costs incurred as a result of the February 2017 storm event. Disaster funds would defray costs from storm damage that occurred on Doulton Tunnel access road, where enormous boulders blocked passage, and at Jameson Lake where downed trees damaged District property.

Second, the Board approved District participation with County of Santa Barbara Flood Control District to pursue grant funding. In coordination with a County project required by the National Marine Fisheries Service to remove a debris dam on San Ysidro Creek, funding may be available to assist the District in relocating a section of water main currently located in the creek bed.

Third, the District has initiated the preparation of a grant application to the State’s Water Recycling Funding Program for the development of a Recycled Water Feasibility Study. Recycled water, the use of which is permissible above the state regulated SBX7-7 target, constitutes a reliable, local water supply and adding it to the portfolio continues to be a high priority for the District.

Montecito Water District’s mission is to provide an adequate and reliable supply of high quality water to the residents of Montecito and Summerland, at the most reasonable cost. In carrying out this mission, the District places particular emphasis on providing outstanding customer service, conducting its operations in an environmentally sensitive manner, and working cooperatively with other agencies. For additional information visit www.montecitowater.com, like Montecito Water District on Facebook, and follow on twitter @MontecitoWater.

Founded in 1921, The Montecito Water District serves a population of approximately 13,100, providing water to more than 4,600 customers. The Montecito Water District’s mission is to provide an adequate and reliable supply of high quality water to the residents of Montecito and Summerland, at the most reasonable cost. In carrying out this mission, the District places particular emphasis on providing outstanding customer service, conducting its operations in an environmentally sensitive manner, and working cooperatively with other agencies. For additional information visit www.montecitowater.com.

 

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