Inyo Board of Supervisors set Talking Water Workshop
May 4, 2016
Submitted by the Inyo Board of Supervisors
THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS is resurrecting the “Talking Water Workshops” held last year to discuss water availability in the Owens Valley. The workshop will be held at 1:30 p.m. during the Board’s regularly scheduled meeting, next Tuesday, May 10, 2016, in Independence.
Last year’s workshops were held in light of the severity of drought conditions and the dire shortfall in water for in-valley uses proposed in LADWP’s 2015-2016 Proposed Annual Operations Plan. Although this year’s run-off forecast is markedly better than last year, it is still projected to be 71% of ‘normal.’ Additionally, in its 2016-2017 Proposed Annual Operations Plan, the City of Los Angeles Department and Water and Power included a footnote that, although it plans to provide 45,000 acre-feet of water for Owens Valley irrigation purposes,
“LADWP intends to pursue a [further] reduction in irrigation pursuant to the terms of the Long Term Water Agreement . . .”
This follows LADWP seeking to have the Inyo-Los Angeles Standing Committee pre-approve undefined reductions in irrigation at Standing Committee meetings on February 8th. It also follows the March 31st Standing Committee direction that the Technical Group meet “to develop a program, or programs, providing for reasonable reductions in irrigation Water Supply of Los Angeles-owned lands in Owens Valley and for enhancement/mitigation projects, and to submit the programs for consideration and possible approval by the Inyo County Board of Supervisors and the Department acting through the Standing Committee.”
Despite LADWP’s call for undefined reductions to irrigation and other projects identified in the Long Term Water Agreement, and the Standing Committee’s direction to the Tech Group, the LADWP has yet to provide the County or the community with any written proposal to evaluate.
In anticipation that – despite, to date, the lack of a written plan being shared with the County, considered by the Technical Group, or available for public review – LADWP will again place this issue on the agenda for the Standing Committee scheduled on May 12, 2016, in Inyo County, the Board of Supervisors is being proactive and seeking input from all segments of the community concerning Owens Valley water availability and use.
The workshop is scheduled for May 10, 2016, at 1:30 p.m., in the Board of Supervisors Room, at the County Administrative Center in Independence. Following the workshop, the Board will consider the draft agenda for the May 12th Standing Committee agenda and provide direction to the County’s Standing Committee representatives.
The Board encourages those who are interested in learning about and providing information concerning the impacts and mitigation of reduced water availability in Inyo County to attend the workshop and share with the Board your comments and ideas.
cover photo by Gary Young