Meeting Date:

August 16, 2004





David A. Berger,




General Manager

Line Item No.:




Prepared By:


Henrietta Stern

Cost Estimate:


General Counsel Approval:

Staff note provided for review

Committee Recommendation:


CEQA Compliance:

Categorical Exemption, Guidelines Section 15303


SUMMARY:  The Board will consider whether or not to approve an application to create a multiple-connection water distribution system (WDS) in the Deer Flats Park area of the City of Monterey.  A new well would serve the drinking water and irrigation needs for three single-family homes on three existing legal lots of record totaling 3.3 acres (APNs 101-091-018, -019 and -020).  Application #20040518FLA to create the Flagg Hill WDS was submitted on May 14, 2004 (accepted on May 18, 2004), and is provided as Exhibit 15-A.   The entire package of application materials and related correspondence is available for review at the District office. The full set of application materials in the file includes:


Ø      MPWMD Form IG96-5, Application for Water Distribution System Permit, along with a Supplemental Questionnaire.

Ø      Portions of Assessor’s map showing the three subject parcels on Flagg Hill Road, just north of Deer Forest Drive and Monhollan Road, near the Deer Flats Park area, City of Monterey.

Ø      Monterey County Health Department well construction permit #01-306 (January 9, 2002); and well completion report #761336 (January 2002).

Ø      Water system plans showing existing and planned water distribution and treatment facilities.

Ø      Portions of application materials and correspondence with Monterey County Health Department regarding application to obtain a County water system permit.

Ø      March 12, 2003 “Test Pumping Data & Report,” from Mountain Hydro Systems, showing the results of a witnessed 28-hour pumping test completed on Dec 11, 2002.

Ø      Water quality results of selected contaminants from Monterey Bay Analytical Services dated February 25, 2004, showing results before and after treatment.

Ø      February 18, 2004 letter from Cal-Am stating that fire service can be provided.

Ø      January 1981 Draft EIR for Flagg Hill Subdivision.

Ø      City of Monterey Resolution No. 14,387 C.S. certifying Final EIR and approving Flagg Hill Subdivision, June 2, 1981.

Ø      Grant Deeds to subject properties showing ownership by John N. Jepson and Constance I. Fulton, applicants.  



Staff recommends that the Board of Directors take the following actions:

                   Adopt the MPWMD Findings of Approval for Application #20040518FLA provided as Exhibit 15-B.  The Findings include and refer to CEQA compliance (see “Discussion” below).


                   Approve Application #20040518FLA and issue Permit #M04-01 with the Conditions of Approval specified in Exhibit 15-C.  These conditions include use of water for domestic use and associated landscape irrigation, with an annual system capacity (production) limit of 1.5 acre-feet per year (AFY) and an expansion capacity (connection) limit of three connections.  The service area would encompass the three legal parcels described in the application.  Another notable condition is approval of the water treatment system by the Monterey County Health Department. 


DISCUSSION:  The following paragraphs address various aspects of the application.


Existing Setting  

The three existing, contiguous residential parcels to be served by the water system are located on Flagg Hill Road, just north of Deer Forest Drive and Monhollan Road, City of Monterey.  Each of the three subject parcels is slightly over one acre with a combined acreage of approximately 3.3 acres. All three residential parcels are currently undeveloped.  The properties are generally wooded, and surrounded by steeply sloping properties.  The subject well is not within the Carmel Valley Alluvial Aquifer or the Seaside Coastal Subareas.  The water source is considered to be percolating groundwater.  The properties are within the California American Water (Cal-Am) service area.  However, Cal-Am service connections are unavailable from Cal-Am based on State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) Order WR 95-10 limiting Cal-Am diversions from the Carmel River, City of Monterey allocation constraints, and District regulations.  Correspondence submitted with the application materials show that Cal-Am can provide emergency fire service.  The property zoning is Monterey City R-E 40.   Allowed uses include single-family homes and other uses.  A use permit from the City of Monterey would be needed for more than one kitchen, a guest house or employee housing.


One well, drilled in January 2002, currently exists on APN 101-091-018.  The applicant has been concurrently pursuing a water system permit from the Monterey County Health Department.  The water system has not been constructed. 


Proposed System

The application proposes creating a three-connection water distribution system served by a single, existing well.  A WDS permit is required from MPWMD because the well is intended to serve more than one legal parcel.  The well is intended to provide potable water for three contiguous parcels in addition to associated exterior landscape irrigation uses. The applicant does not propose agriculture (e.g., acreage devoted to fruit trees, vineyards) or significant amounts of landscaping beyond that associated with a home on an estate lot.  The water system would consist of the well, a polyethylene storage tank, three pressure tanks, two booster pumps and two treatment units.  Details of the distribution system are described in an April 14, 2004 letter from Utility Services to the Health Department in addition to associated drawings. 

The 400-foot well is completed in the fractured shales of the Monterey Formation, and therefore an extended pumping test is required to prove an adequate long-term supply.  Health Department and District guidelines require a 72-hour test for potable supply in consolidated rock (i.e., “bedrock) formations.  A 28-hour pumping test was completed on the well in December 2002, and witnessed by a Health Department representative.  Pumping test results showed that the well produced 66 gallons per minute (gpm), with limited drawdown, stabilized pumping levels and a short recovery period.  For a three-connection system, reliable production of 9 gpm is needed to meet Health Department requirements (Monterey County Code, Chapter 15.04).  The Health Department representative agreed that the test could stop at 28 hours due to the high productivity of the well.


According to a water quality analysis of the subject well, the untreated water contains levels of iron, manganese and turbidity that exceed secondary drinking water limits.  The well water also exceeds the standard for aluminum, which is a primary contaminant.   Health Department representatives advised the District that the applicant is retesting the water quality (results are unknown at this writing).  If the results show levels below the limit, the system will likely be approved as designed.  If the standard for aluminum is still exceeded, the applicant will be required to resubmit a modified/engineering treatment design to the Health Department to address this issue.  The water system will include two or more filtration systems to reduce contaminant levels.  Probable Health Department permit conditions will include more frequent testing for aluminum and proper disposal of treatment wastes. 


Analysis of Potential Impacts  

Potential Impacts on Nearby Receptors.  The subject well is completed in consolidated rock formations (bedrock) and not the alluvial materials of any river or creek.  The well is not within the Carmel River watershed, and there are no sensitive tributaries within 1,000 feet of the well.  The District is aware of one existing well within 1,000 feet of the subject well, an active well located approximately 250 feet to the northwest.  The well information submitted by the applicant, along with nearby well information assembled by District staff, were analyzed by the District hydrogeologist, under typical dry-season pumping conditions.  Staff concluded that no significant impacts are anticipated under the assumed hydrogeologic parameters, well construction and operating conditions.


Length of Well Capacity Test and Proof of Adequate Supply. While the Health Department representative authorized a shorter pumping test for Health Department purposes, the District typically requires a full 72-hour test for wells in consolidated (bedrock) environments that are proposed to be the sole source of drinking water. However, in reviewing the data submitted, District staff concluded that this particular well is not as marginal as other wells in bedrock formations found in other areas of the District.  Therefore, the information provided is considered to be acceptable. However, because the pumping test was shortened, the District informed the applicant of the District’s policy to use more conservative (lower) demand assumptions and regional averages developed from other well testing programs in the District to set estimates of well capacities and annual production limits. The applicant was given the option to perform additional pumping tests as directed by the MPWMD Water Resources Division Manager.  The applicant agreed to staff applying the lower regional averages to this water system.



Water Quality.  Water quality information described above shows the well requires treatment to decrease aluminum, iron, manganese and turbidity below maximum contaminant levels.  The findings and conditions described in Exhibits 15-B and 15-C note that the well exceeds drinking water standards, and any future application(s) to connect these parcels to Cal-Am due to inadequate water quality will be opposed by MPWMD until SWRCB Order 95-10 has been lifted. Approval by the Health Department is an important condition of approval of the MPWMD permit.


CEQA Compliance

The District Board must comply with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) as well as MPWMD regulations.  Staff will recommend that the General Manager approve a Categorical Exemption pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Section 15303, “New Construction or Conversion of Small Structures.”  This section applies because the Flagg Hill WDS would be appurtenant to allowed uses (residences) on existing approved parcels, which were created by the City of Monterey in compliance with CEQA.  The EIR on the Flagg Hill Subdivision was certified by City of Monterey on June 2, 1981 (Resolution No. 14,387 CS).  A Draft Notice of Exemption is attached as Exhibit 15-D.  It would be filed upon approval of the WDS application by the MPWMD Board.


Findings of Approval

The Findings of Approval (Exhibit 15-B are based on evidence provided in the application materials (Exhibit 15-A and supporting attachments on file at the District office).  Staff believes the application meets the criteria and minimum standards required by District Rule 22.  Pertinent information includes application materials listed above, zoning and existing land use, technical and water rights information, as well as conditions to be imposed on the approved application.  The subject property is not within the Carmel River watershed, and is not within 1,000 feet of any of the listed tributaries to the Carmel River.  Review by the District Hydrogeologist provides a technical analysis that indicates use of the well will not significantly impact nearby wells or stream-flow.


Production and Connection Limits, and Other Conditions of Approval

Condition #3 in Exhibit 15-C sets a production limit (system capacity) of 1.5 AFY, which reflects the information provided in the application materials and the characteristics of the property.   The amount of 1.5 AFY is also the quantity upon which the staff hydrogeologic analysis was based.  Connections (expansion capacity) will be limited to three connections -- one for each of three contiguous vacant parcels.  Other conditions imposed are consistent with MPWMD Rule 22-D requiring various conditions of approval for water distribution systems.


Public Notice

Public notice has been provided no later than 10 days prior to this public hearing in several ways: (1) posting at the District office; (2) posting around the subject parcel as confirmed by a completed Certificate of Posting; and (3) mailed notices by the District to property owners within 300 feet of the subject parcel.  In addition, a hearing notice was posted on the District website.



15-A    Application #20040518FLA accepted May 18, 2004

15-B    Draft Findings of Approval for Application #20040518FLA

15-C    Draft Conditions of Approval for Application #20040518FLA, Permit #M04-01

15-D    Draft Notice of Exemption from CEQA for Application #20040518FLA