5. MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE MONTEREY PENINSULA WATER MANAGEMENT DISTRICT AND THE CARMEL RIVER STEELHEAD ASSOCIATION
Meeting Date: June 16, 2003 Budgeted: N/A
General Counsel: Review Pending
Committee Recommendation: N/A
CEQA Compliance: N/A
State & Federal Agency Review: Consistent with the Annual Memorandum of Agreement between California Department of Fish and Game and the District for operations at Sleepy Hollow Steelhead Rearing Facility, the District’s License Agreement with California-American Water Company and permit application pending with NOAA-Fisheries
SUMMARY: The Board will consider approval of an agreement with the Carmel River Steelhead Association (CRSA) to deliver juvenile steelhead that are rescued from tributaries of the Carmel River and to rear these fish at the District’s Sleepy Hollow Steelhead Rearing Facility (Facility). CRSA and staff have negotiated the proposed agreement, Exhibit 5-A, over the last year, and it addresses a long-standing request to rear fish from tributary rescues at the Facility.
RECOMMENDATION: District staff recommends approval of the agreement, subject to the proposed terms and conditions.
BACKGROUND: In a letter dated May 19, 2000, the CRSA requested that the District accept and rear juvenile steelhead rescued by CRSA (Exhibit 5-B, Enclosure 1). In response to this request, staff assembled a proposed protocol for this operation, Exhibit 5-B, and began negotiations with CRSA representatives to implement the request, subject to approval of a memorandum of agreement and review and approval by CDFG and NOAA-Fisheries.
A key issue for consideration is whether the tributary fish will impact existing operations at the Facility, which is funded by the Cal-Am user fee and specifically designed to mitigate for existing Cal-Am pumping along the mainstem of the Carmel River in Carmel Valley. Staff reviewed this situation and believes that the anticipated increased costs are minor, including small amounts of additional food and limited additional time on Saturdays to accept the fish.
In an April 21, 2002 letter, CRSA notified the District that the Association had added the District to its general insurance liability policy as an “additional insured” (Exhibit 5-C). This addresses a major concern regarding CRSA access and use of the Facility. In addition, CRSA is willing to hold the District, its employees, and agents harmless in the event that CRSA members are injured at the Facility.