January Water Commission meeting features 2024 Workplan, DWR Strategic Plan, final White Paper on Drought Strategies, 2023 State Water Project Review and Water Storage Investment Program

The California Water Commission will hold a meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 17 in Sacramento. The meeting is open to the public and will also be live streamed online.

Members of the public will be able to observe the meeting and provide public comments in-person at the meeting location or remotely. Remote participation will be conducted via a web- based videoconferencing service called Zoom.

Registration is not required to provide public comments. Members of the public who wish to provide comments remotely during the meeting can do so by joining on Zoom (https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85615855471?pwd=aDBtRENvZXMrSmhScngvTmJ4Z0xndz09).

More detailed instructions on how to use Zoom and participate in the meeting can be found here on the commission’s website.

Alternatively, members of the public can offer verbal comments by telephone by calling one of the numbers below:
(408) 638-0968
(669) 900-6833
Meeting ID: 856 1585 5471 Passcode: 515584

The meeting will be webcast live at: water-ca.com/. Individuals who only want to watch or listen should use this option as it preserves interactive meeting resources for those who are commenting on items.

Agenda items include presentations of the Commission’s 2024 workplan, final white paper on drought strategies, and the State Water Project annual review, and Department of Water Resources’ Strategic Plan. The Commission will also receive an update on the Willow Springs Water Bank Conjunctive Use Project, part of the Water Storage Investment Program, and an overview of the Commission’s discretion regarding the progress and funding of projects under the Program.

2024 Workplan
Commission staff will present an overview of planned Commission activities for 2024, including anticipated subjects for discussion at each meeting.

Water Storage Investment Program:
Discussion on Project Progress and Commission Discretion
Proposition 1 (2014) dedicated $2.7 billion for investments in water storage projects. The California Water Commission is administering the Program to fund the public benefits associated with these projects. The Program regulations give the Commission discretion to determine whether a project is making substantial progress toward completing the program’s statutory requirements. Commission counsel will provide an overview of the discretion contained in the Program regulations as related to project progress and WSIP funding.

Water Storage Investment Program: Willow Springs Water Bank Project Update
Representatives of the Southern California Water Bank Authority, the project proponent for the Willow Springs Water Bank Conjunctive Use Project, will update the Commission on the status of the project. This project, which will operate conjunctively with the State Water Project, will leverage 500,000 acre feet of existing groundwater storage facilities and provide ecosystem benefits north of the Delta.

Drought Strategies: Presentation of Final White Paper
Commission staff will present, for Commission approval, the final white paper containing potential strategies to protect communities and fish and wildlife in the event of drought. The white paper conveys the information the Commission gathered in support of Water Resilience Portfolio Action 26.3 and comes at the request of the Secretaries for Food and Agriculture, Environmental Protection, and Natural Resources.

DWR Strategic Plan
DWR Executive staff will provide an overview of DWR’s updated strategic plan, which serves as a roadmap for optimizing the wise and equitable use of water in a changing climate, deepening the commitment to restore and enhance the environment, and expanding public safety and emergency response. Focused on the next five years, the plan identifies goals, objectives, and actions that are essential to DWR’s success.

State Water Project Annual Review
Commission staff will present the draft 2023 Annual Review of the State Water Project for Commission consideration and approval. Water Code section 165 requires the commission to conduct an annual review of the construction and operation of the State Water Project and to report its findings and recommendations to the director of the DWR and the state legislature.

Commission staff will also provide a status update on the remaining projects eligible for Proposition 1 funding: Chino Basin Conjunctive Use Project, Harvest Water Program, Kern Fan Groundwater Storage Project, Los Vaqueros Reservoir Expansion Project, Pacheco Reservoir Expansion Project, and the Sites Project. For more information on the Water Storage Investment Program, visit cwc.ca.gov/Water-Storage.

Click here to see the agenda

About the California Water Commission
The nine-member California Water Commission uses its public forum to explore water management issues from multiple perspectives and to formulate recommendations to advise the director of the California Department of Water Resources, and as appropriate, the California Natural Resources Agency, the governor and the California State Legislature on ways to improve water planning and management in response to California’s changing hydrology. As required by Water Code section 165, the commission conducts an annual review of the construction and operation of the State Water Project. For more information regarding the California Water Commission, visit cwc.ca.gov.