Meeting Date:           February 27, 2003                  Budgeted: N/A

Program/Line Item No.: N/A

Staff Contact:             Henrietta Stern                      Cost Estimate: N/A


General Counsel Approval:  N/A     

Committee Recommendation: N/A

CEQA Compliance: N/A



This is a brief monthly update on the water supply augmentation strategic initiative for the January 15-February 19, 2003 period.  The most recent detailed quarterly report was prepared in January 2003; the next quarterly report will be written in April 2003.  The primary work efforts reflect Board direction at strategic planning workshops and regular Board meetings held since September 2001.  The most recent Board action was taken at the January 30, 2003 meeting.  Currently, three priority efforts for the District involve water augmentation, as follows:


Priority 1 -- proceed with aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) test project (also known as “injection/recovery”) while simultaneously evaluating long-term water supply options;

Priority 3 -- develop work plan to implement Seaside Basin Groundwater Management Plan; and

Priority 4 -- develop storm water management plan (integrated into Priority 1).


Priority 1 - EIR/EIS on Water Supply Project

At its March 18, 2002 meeting, the Board authorized the Phase 1 Environmental Impact Report (EIR) scope of work to be performed by Jones & Stokes Associates (JSA) the primary environmental consultant, and its engineering services subcontractor Camp Dresser & McKee (CDM) for a not-so-exceed amount of about $724,000.  The Phase 1 engineering work has focused on developing project descriptions for non-dam alternatives based on engineering assessments that go beyond the general concepts found in the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) “Plan B” non-dam alternative report.   The Phase 1 environmental work included issuance of a Notice of Preparation (NOP) of the EIR in June 2002, public hearings on the NOP and receipt of written comments in July 2002, and review of policy issues elicited by the comments in July and August 2002.  


At its August 29, 2002 meeting, the MPWMD Board voted 4-3 to not approve the Phase 2 scope of work to prepare the Draft EIR/EIS, and instead directed that key Phase 1 engineering tasks be first completed, and more information obtained about pertinent topics before moving forward.  The needed information included:  perform detailed review of Plan B Final Report released by the CPUC in August 2002 to assess data still required for the EIR; determine California-American Water Company (Cal-Am) plans for a dam or Plan B; confirm lead agency status with the CPUC, and confirm U.S. Army plans regarding role as federal lead agency.  A status report on these topics was presented at the November 14, 2002 strategic planning workshop


At its August 29 and September 16, 2002 meetings, the Board also directed staff to add a new “Task 2-0” to define the streamflow regime that would sustain the existing Carmel River habitat and dependent species.  This information would be used as the basis of defining thresholds of significance in the EIR, that is, a numerical value used to determine whether a project impact is significant or not as compared to the existing situation.  At the August 29 meeting, the Board understood that the goal of certifying an EIR by October 2003 would likely not be achieved due to the extra time needed for Task 2.0 as well as delays not in the District’s control relating to access to engineering data.


Key activities by District staff and consultants in the January 15-February 19, 2003 period include:


                   Developed scope of work, time line and cost estimate associated evaluation of various water supply projects in a Draft EIR for Board consideration at its February 27, 2003 meeting.


                   Attended a February 11, 2003 press conference hosted by Cal-Am regarding its decision to pursue a Moss Landing desalination project combined with a small ASR project, called the Coastal Water Project (formerly known as “Plan B”), rather than a new dam on the Carmel River; initiated discussion of options regarding environmental review.


                   Completed second administrative draft of Phase 1 engineering evaluation report in mid-February 2003 for continued internal review by District technical staff.  This effort included information obtained from meetings with Cal-Am, Cities of Sand City, Seaside and Monterey as well as Monterey County.  A draft report will be presented to the Board in March 2003.  The report includes combinations of water supply projects to meet three production targets as well as cost information.


                   Completed revised draft Carmel River Flow Threshold Report in mid-February 2003 for Board review at the February 27, 2003 meeting.  The revised draft responds to comments received on the January 2003 version.


                   Received State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) temporary urgency permit for ASR testing program for the January-May 2003 period; injected approximately 30 acre-feet into the Seaside Basin until Carmel River flow fell below trigger amount allowed by the permit. 


                   Continued computer modeling to support a Water Availability Analysis requested by the SWRCB to assess the MPWMD Petition for Change for diversion of up to 7,909 acre-feet per year from the Carmel River.


                   Continued participation in oversight of San Clemente Dam seismic safety and sediment transport issues.  Attending a public briefing by state and local officials on emergency procedures associated with a dam failure.


Priority 3 - Seaside Basin Groundwater Management Plan

Based on Board direction in April and June 2002, staff developed a scope of work for a technical, environmental and legal review of conceptual ordinances associated with a long-term groundwater management plan.   The firm of Jones & Stokes was the only firm that responded to the Request for Proposals, and a contract was authorized in December 2002.  That same month, the Phase III Hydrogeologic Update of the Laguna Seca Subarea was finalized.


Key activities in the January 15-February 19, 2003 period include:


                   Began working with Jones & Stokes Associates to conduct environmental review and facilitate public outreach for ordinances relating to the Seaside Basin Groundwater Management Plan.


                   Held informal meetings with other water agencies involved with water management on the former Fort Ord.  Based on these discussions, District staff developed revised draft Principles of Agreement to serve as a catalyst to update agreements signed in 1993; a key principle is continued protection of the Seaside Basin by MPWMD.


                   Met with Cal-Am General Manager to brief him on the Hidden Hills situation.  He verbally indicated he did not wish to proceed at this time on a pending application to serve potential new subdivisions in the Hidden Hills area. 


Related Water Augmentation Activities

The following table briefly summarizes recent action on related water augmentation efforts.







Test full-scale injection test well on former Fort Ord; continue testing pilot well, as appropriate.


District began injection testing on January 24, 2003; testing was suspended on January 30 due to inadequate river flow.  Approximately 30 AF injected; awaiting renewed flow pending sufficient rainfall. 


Obtain SWRCB temporary permits for Water Year 2002 test period; begin process to obtain long-term water rights.


SWRCB issued temporary permit for year 2003 testing season on January 22, 2003. District is developing information requested by SWRCB for the long-term permit.


Participate in CPUC hearings on proposed dam and Plan B.


District staff and consultants continue to incorporate usable information from Plan B Report into the EIR.  On February 11, 2003, Cal-Am announced its intent to pursue a Moss Landing desalination plant plus ASR (Coastal Water Project, previously known as “Plan B”) rather than a dam. 


Finalize legal lot/remodel study to include data from County of Monterey; incorporate into water project EIR.


In the absence of County data for Phase II, MPWMD staff in Fall 2002 developed interim Phase II estimates for the County along with a rough estimate of total water use. 


Provide leadership to ensure compliance with SWRCB Order 95-10; pursue relaxation of one-for-one offset.


Community water use has remained below year-to-date targets since December 2001.  District staff continues coordination with Cal-Am to encourage conservation.


Continue evaluation of feasibility of sediment removal from San Clemente and Los Padres Reservoirs.


Staff continues coordination and oversight of California Department of Water Resources and Cal-Am action on San Clemente Dam. No action on Los Padres Dam.


Continue pursuit of storm water reuse opportunities in cooperation with ongoing regional efforts.


Meeting with jurisdictions as opportunities allow. Incorporating storm water reuse as an alternative for evaluation in the EIR/EIS. 


Water Distribution System Permits

Staff implements District Rules and Regulations that govern water distribution systems within the District.   District staff receives many calls each month from people who are planning to submit applications or have other questions about ordinances governing water distribution systems.  District staff also responds to written requests for information.


Ordinance No. 105, which further refines the Rules and Regulations that govern water distribution systems within the District, became effective on January 15, 2003.  The regulatory area in Carmel Valley for single-parcel connection systems now includes the entire Carmel River watershed within the District boundary, rather than being limited to the alluvial aquifer or 1,000 feet from the alluvial aquifer and certain named tributaries.  On January 30, 2003, the Board approved the first reading of Ordinance No. 106 amending permit application fees, and determined that Ordinance No. 106 is not a “project” under CEQA as its impact is financial only.  The second reading is scheduled for February 27, 2003. 


District staff is currently processing one permit application to amend the Cañada Woods Water Distribution System.  The District awaits technical information that it requested from the applicant.


CEQA Documents

The District logs incoming notices and comments on selected CEQA documents prepared by other agencies for projects within the District boundary that could potentially affect water supply, quality or environmental resources managed by the District.  A February 3, 2003 comment letter was transmitted expressing concerns about well reliability associated with the Investmark Project near David Avenue in Pacific Grove (within Monterey County area).  Nine separate wells on nine adjacent lots in a consolidated (hard) rock environment are contemplated.




HS first draft 02/13/03