Tag Archives: inyo county water department

Field trip to Five Bridges Area

Inyo Water Commission Field trip will tour the Five Bridges Impact Area

submitted by the Inyo County Water Department
February 8, 2016

The public is invited to join the tour  Wednesday February 10th at 9 am.  Meet in Bishop at the corner of Wye Road and Spruce Road—Directly behind Kmart

The Inyo County Water Commission invites the public to participate in a field trip to the Five Bridges Impact Area located three miles north of Bishop. In the summer of 1988, approximately 300 acres of native vegetation were lost when nearby LADWP wells de-watered the area and caused groundwater to retreat from below the rooting zone. The area is an environmental Mitigation Project identified in the 1991 Long Term Water Agreement between Inyo County and LADWP.

LADWP has managed the revegetation of this area, with input from the County since the fall of 1988. The project has as its goal reestablishing native meadow similar to those that exist nearby outside the affected area. This has not been easy, and based on measures of vegetation cover and composition; the project has only fully met desired conditions six times in the past 26 years.

The tour will include an overlook of the Five Bridges Impact Area and two short walks into the project site.

Also discussed will be the proposal by LADWP to operate the two wells that led to the loss of vegetation. These wells, designated 385R and 386R have been modified to draw water from the deep aquifer at a lower rate. LADWP considers these new wells. This proposal is currently under discussion by the County and LADWP.

The tour will last about three hours. Participants will need to provide their own transportation, and prepare to be outside for about three hours.

The Inyo County Water Commission is an advisory panel to the Inyo County Board of Supervisors. One of its principal responsibilities is to conduct meetings to inform and educate the public about, and to solicit public opinion on, all issues, decisions, projects, programs and activities arising out of agreements and stipulations between the LADWP and Inyo County.

For more information, please call 760-878-0001, or visit www.inyowater.org/LORP.

cover photo by Gary Young

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DWP issues post-standing committee statement

DWP issues statement

The June 4th Inyo/LA standing committee meeting was dominated by a shared sense of cooperation between Inyo County and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.  Working through another year of drought the two parties agreed to reduce water to the McNalley enhancement/mitigation project and Warren Lake while securing irrigation water through July.

In response to the June 4, 2015 Inyo County/Los Angeles Standing Committee meeting, The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power has issued the following statement:

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) is pleased with the outcome of the June 4 Standing Committee meeting. In these times of unprecedented drought, we are encouraged by the collaboration exercised by the Inyo County community. This shared sacrifice by all, including the City of Los Angeles who itself is receiving an 85 percent reduction in LA Aqueduct water this runoff year, will allow local ranchers the ability to irrigate their lands through July. LADWP and the other MOU parties are working toward finalizing an agreement (hopefully by early THIS week) that will save up to 4,000 AF of water toward additional irrigation in the Owens Valley. If additional water savings are realized on Owens Lake this Fall and are agreed by Great Basin, State Lands, and California Department of Fish and Wildlife, then more water can be made available for continuing irrigation into August and later into the irrigation season.  We look forward to continued constructive collaboration with the community and more positive outcomes from future negotiations.”

The next Inyo/LA standing committee meeting is set for July 24th in Los Angeles.

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Low Water, High Passion at Tech Group Meeting

Inyo County/Los Angleles Technical Group hears public concerns

The Inyo County/Los Angeles Department of water and power technical group met Tuesday morning at the DWP’s Bishop headquarters. The relatively short, 5 item agenda featured a scheduled discussion on water supply reductions to the McNalley ponds, but also featured pointed questions from local residents demanding answers to what they call “clear violations of the long term water agreement”.

Residents Sally Manning, Daris Moxley, and Gary Gilbert addressed the technical group Tuesday, as they did at the May 4th meeting. Manning quoted the Long Term Water agreement section relating to the DWP’s requirement to provide irrigation water. In regards to cuts in irrigation water, Manning said, “Justice is not being done”.

Daris Moxley spoke passionately about attending technical group and standing committee meetings since 2008 to voice concerns in regards to the DWP’s “non-compliance with the long term water agreement.”. Moxley noted that her questions have not be answered by the LADWP or Inyo County.

Responding to Moxley, Inyo County Water director Bob Harrington said, “We are reviewing the material you submitted and making assessments.”

Wilkerson rancher Gary Gilbert questioned the procedure for cuts in irrigation water. Stressing the importance of providing advance notice.

At the last Standing committee meeting Inyo County and the LADWP did not agree on a program of reasonable reductions in light of the ongoing drought. The long term agreement calls for reductions in irrigation, enhancement/mitigation, and other environmental projects in the Owens Valley. Bob Harrington indicates that Inyo County is continuing to meeting with MOU parties to look at adjustments to current projects to conserve water that could be transferred to irrigation.   Potential projects targeted include the lower owens river project and the owens dry lake.

The Standing committee is set to meet June 4th.

Cover Photo by Gary Young.

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