The California Department of Water Resources (“DWR”) announced on February 6, 2018, the release of Draft Funding Recommendations for the 2017 Groundwater Sustainability Plans and Projects Solicitation under the Proposition 1 Sustainable Groundwater Planning Grant Program. DWR received 78 proposals and all were recommended for award, totaling approximately $85.8 million.
The North Fork Kings Groundwater Sustainability Agency and the Mid-Kings River Groundwater Sustainability Agency each submitted a project proposal on behalf their respective groundwater subbasins – the Kings Subbasin and Tulare Lake Subbasin. Per Bulletin 118, the Kings Subbasin and Tulare Lake Subasin are designated as ‘High Priority’ Basins and ‘Subject to Critical Conditions of Overdraft’. Both Groundwater Sustainability Agencies (“GSAs”) were each recommended to receive $1.5 million to develop Groundwater Sustainability Plan(s) (“GSP”) for their groundwater subbasins, pending a public comment period.
The Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (“SGMA”), signed into law in 2014, directs local public agencies and GSAs to development and implement a GSP or alternative plan. The GSP defines the basin setting and establishes criteria that will maintain or achieve sustainable groundwater management over a 20-40 year horizon. SGMA requires critically-overdrafted high and medium priority basins to be managed under a GSP by January 31, 2020.
Information on the Draft Funding Recommendations and public comment submittal may be accessed through the DWR website.