ITEMS TO NOTE
The 2020 Benefit Assessment statements were mailed on June 8, 2020. The charges are due now and delinquent after November 19, 2020. A 5% penalty will be added after the delinquent date. Please contact Jessie Xiong at (559) 241-6212 for additional information about Assessments.
2020-2021 Supplemental Water Advance Charges
At the June 16, 2020, Finance and Administration Committee meeting, the Committee directed staff to pre-allocate approximately 55,000 acre-feet of 2020-2021 Supplemental Water. To provide financial relief to water users who will receive an allocation of 2020-2021 Supplemental Water in June 2020, the General Manager is exercising his authority, under Section 10 of the District’s Terms and Conditions for Agricultural Water Service, to establish due dates for advance payments.
Payments for the advance charges for 2020-2021 Supplemental Water allocated in June 2020, will be due and payable in three equal monthly installments, with one third (1/3) due July 27, one third (1/3) due August 25, and one third (1/3) due September 25. If a water user wishes to receive the entire June allocation amount, they should contact their Customer Service Representative for payment instructions. In addition, emails with additional information will be sent to all water users that requested Supplemental Water.
Timely payments made under this payment plan will not incur penalty, interest or monitoring charges. The 2020-2021 Supplemental Water will become available for use after the advance payments are received. Please call your Customer Service Representative at (559) 241-6250 if you have any questions.
2020-2021 Supplemental Water Application – Response May Be Required
As of June 18, the total request for 2020-2021 Supplemental Water is 130,811 acre-feet on 274,228 acres. The estimated Supplemental Water delivered cost will range from $680 – $710 per acre-foot. The District will meet all timely requests. Allocations of Supplemental Water will begin in June, and the timing and amounts of expected allocations for the year are shown in the table below. This schedule will continue to be updated monthly to reflect additional supplies and/or changes to the timing for delivery.
|Allocation Month||Amount (acre-feet)|
|June – Estimated||55,000|
|July – Estimated||0|
|August – Estimated||25,000|
|September – Estimated||28,300|
|October – Estimated||15,000|
|November – Estimated||0|
Advance payment for acquisition costs of the water is required at the time of allocation (see additional discussion above), while operation and maintenance related costs will be billed when the water is used. The allocation advance payment will apply toward the delivered Supplemental Water rate. If an advance payment is delinquent for 30 days or more, the District may withdraw the water allocated to a water user and reduce the water user’s outstanding request by the same amount. The water will be allocated to water user accounts as Project or non-Project water (if available), allowing Full-Cost rates to be applied as required by Reclamation law.
If you would like to submit a late request for the Supplemental Water program, please complete the agreement, included in the February 28, 2020 Landowner Notice, and return it to the Fresno Office. Late requests will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis, after timely requests are filled. Please direct questions to your Customer Accounting Technician at (559) 241-6250.
GWMP Meter Installation and Well Modifications
The District would like to remind water users that staff is currently installing District owned saddle mag meters on groundwater wells that are enrolled in the Groundwater Management Program (GWMP). The District is complying with a schedule established in the Westside Subbasin Groundwater Sustainability Plan (GSP) for installation of the meters. There have been instances where saddle mag meters were removed and replaced with a water user’s meter, without District knowledge. Given the regulatory requirements and deadline for installing meters on all wells within the District, staff asks that water users work closely with District operators to ensure that District owned meters can be installed. Please report meter issues and do not remove or replace District owned meters.
Please inform the District when not operating wells so District staff can plan the meter installation and/or discharge piping modifications. If the well discharge piping requires modifications, then staff will coordinate with you on the changes. Communicating this information is critical to meeting the GSP schedule. For questions related to well modifications, contact the Alex Young at (559) 884-2523 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cross-Connection of Groundwater Wells to the Distribution System
District staff is aware that it can be beneficial and common for water users to connect groundwater wells to filter stations located adjacent to District water deliveries, called a cross-connection. This configuration allows growers to blend surface and groundwater for irrigating. However, when these cross-connections are made, it is important to have equipment in place to prevent water from backflowing into the District’s distribution system, which creates an operational and safety issue for the District’s facilities and personnel.
Staff observed two recent events where a cross-connection caused regulating tanks to overflow, flooding the adjacent area. The District’s design standards require water users with cross-connections to install a check valve downstream of the District’s discharge valve to prevent such backflow. For questions related to cross-connections, contact Brian Farmen at (559) 884-2523 or email@example.com.
Summer Hours of Operation
Effective June 15, the Five Points Shop and Field Office (including TFO, HFO and PVPP), commenced summer hours of operation, from 6:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. All other District offices and operations will remain unchanged and will remain open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. The emergency telephone number for after hours and holidays is (559) 224-1523.
Website Change – External Links
To enhance user security, we implemented a change on our website that identifies external links. External links available on the site http://wwd.ca.gov, are identified by the following image: (a small square + arrow icon) to the right of the link text. When a user clicks on an external link, a pop-up window will notify the user they are leaving the site http://wwd.ca.gov.
For security reasons, Westlands maintains and separates public and private customer sites. The site separation allows enhanced security measures. When a user is viewing our public website, and then clicks the “Log In” button, the pop-up notification will appear. This behavior is expected since the private section is considered external.
Public Education Program Update – Quarterly Newsletter
Westlands Water District recognizes the dedication of its essential workers, as well as essential workers throughout the agricultural industry and the state. The District is proud to support workers who doggedly continue their duties without fail. Westlands Operations and Maintenance (O&M) team, for example, with the support of all Westlands’ departments, ensures water continues to flow throughout the District.
Read the latest Westlands Newsletter, “Recognizing the District’s Essential Workers in the Time of COVID-19,” on the District’s website. If you are interested in seeing the District’s public outreach efforts in real time, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
2020-2021 CVP Contract Allocation
On May 19, 2020, the Bureau of Reclamation announced an increase in the 2020-2021 Central Valley Project (CVP) allocation from 15% to 20% for south-of-Delta agricultural water service contractors. This is likely the final allocation for 2020-2021 contract water year.
2020-2021 Water Supply Update
The CVP currently has approximately 8 million acre-feet of water stored in northern CVP reservoirs; this represents 98% of the 15-year average. Shasta Reservoir storage is approximately 3.35 million acre-feet; 94% of the 15-year average. Federal storage in San Luis Reservoir is 338,000 acre-feet; 70% of the 15-year average. Jones Pumping Plant has operated at about 55% capacity this month.
Storage Loss on Rescheduled Water
The Bureau of Reclamation’s Rescheduling Guidelines for San Luis Reservoir storage provide for a 1% storage loss factor for evaporation and system losses. This loss factor will be prorated to rescheduled water remaining in water user accounts on April 1, 2020, and each subsequent month, until the District delivers all rescheduled water. The District is reviewing all costs associated with this water and will be posting appropriate charges to affected water user accounts.
FINANCE & ADMINISTRATION
Water Ordering and Meter Turn Off
Water users should comply with the District’s water ordering procedures. Conveyance capacity through many laterals is constrained and District staff determines lateral demand based on water orders. When demand exceeds the capacity of the lateral, the entire lateral is adversely affected, and water service can be lost for all users on the lateral. To properly operate and maintain the District’s water distribution system, and to a larger extent the Central Valley Project, water users are required to place proper water orders in accordance with District’s Terms and Conditions for Agricultural Water Service.
Further, water users who are found to be running without an order will have their meter(s) turned off pursuant to Article 2, Section 2.6.H of the District’s Rules and Regulations. In addition, meters found running without a valid water order may be subject to a portion of or entire lateral monitoring fee of $647.31. Accurate water orders are also critical for reference if a meter malfunctions or varies from a standard calibration range. Your monthly billing can be directly affected by the accuracy of your water orders.
The schedule for placing water orders is as follows: water orders for Tuesday through Saturday must be placed the prior day between 7:30 and 9:30 a.m., by telephone or fax. Orders placed over the website are accepted until 10:00 a.m., for the following day. Water orders for Sunday and Monday must be placed by noon the preceding Friday, either by phone, fax or website. Orders may be placed by calling (559) 241-6250 or (800) 266-6574, by Fax (559) 241-6276, or online through your water user account at wwd.ca.gov. To set up a Westlands online account, please contact your Customer Service Representative at (559) 241-6250.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many District staff are working from home. Therefore, you will not receive paper statements from the District for the near future. To access your monthly Statement of Account and Water Activity Report, please login to your Westlands Water District web account, select Menu, then E-Docs. To ensure your payment is correctly applied to your account(s), always include your account number(s) on your check and/or the remittance stubs from the top section of your monthly billing statement(s).
The District also offers an Automatic Bill Payment (ABP) option for paying your monthly agricultural water bill. Participation in ABP will ensure your payment is always timely and avoids penalty, interest, or monitoring charges due to late payments. The ABP authorization form is available on your Westlands Water District web account by selecting Menu, then Forms, and Automatic Bill Payment Authorization. If you have any questions, please contact the Customer Accounting Department at (559) 241-6250.
Office Communication During COVID-19 Pandemic
Westlands Water District requests that water users conduct all District related business via phone and email, in lieu of visiting District offices. The District’s Fresno and Five Points offices will remain open during regular business hours. The District is following guidelines announced by the Whitehouse and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to slow the spread of the virus. District staff will monitor the developments closely and seeks to maintain the safety of employees, water users, and the public. Westlands will continue its commitment to water users by providing timely and reliable water services.
Please contact District staff if you have questions. Contact the main office by phone: (559) 224-1523, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. The District will provide notices to landowners and water users should District operations be further impacted by Federal or State recommendations to slow the spread of the virus.
OPERATIONS & MAINTENANCE
Planned Maintenance Shutdown Schedule 2020
To keep water users apprised of upcoming planned pumping plant and system maintenance, the District issues a monthly listing of the upcoming schedule for the next 45 to 60 days. Shutdown notices for scheduled work are sent to affected water users in advance of each shutdown. If water users are not receiving these notices, please contact your customer service representative to update your contact information. Please, see the list below:
|Lateral(s) Impacted||Date(s)||Scheduled Work||Notes|
|17R||6/24||Aquatic Growth Treatment||17R-B & 17R-C Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|Entire Coalinga Canal||7/1 to 7/2||Aquatic Growth Treatment||100 CFS Limited Capacity – 24 Hour|
|1R-4.0C & D Reaches||7/8||Aquatic Growth Treatment||1R-4.0D Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|2R||7/15||Aquatic Growth Treatment||2R-A & 2R-B Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|17R||7/22||Aquatic Growth Treatment||17R-B & 17R-C Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|Entire Coalinga Canal||8/5 to 8/6||Aquatic Growth Treatment||100 CFS Limited Capacity – 24 Hour|
|1R-4.0C & D Reaches||8/11||Aquatic Growth Treatment||1R-4.0D Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|2R||8/19||Aquatic Growth Treatment||2R-A & 2R-B Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|17R||8/25||Aquatic Growth Treatment||17R-B & 17R-C Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|Entire Coalinga Canal||9/9 to 9/10||Aquatic Growth Treatment||100 CFS Limited Capacity – 24 Hour|
|1R-4.0C & D Reaches||9/17||Aquatic Growth Treatment||1R-4.0D Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|2R||9/23||Aquatic Growth Treatment||2R-A & 2R-B Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
|17R||9/30||Aquatic Growth Treatment||17R-B & 17R-C Reservoir Treatment 7:00 am – 5:00 pm|
Advance Notice of 2020-2021 Quinquennial Inspection and Repair Shutdown Schedule
The following table lists the District’s planned pumping plant system inspection and repair shutdown schedule for fiscal year 2020-2021. If you have questions or feedback regarding these shutdowns, please contact the District’s Maintenance Scheduler, Jimmy Weedin at (559) 884-2523 ext. 108.
2020-2021 Quinquennial Shutdown Schedule
|Week||Division Valves||Pumping Plants|
|September 14, 2020||25L|
|September 21, 2020||32-2.0||32L|
|September 28, 2020||PV4|
|October 5, 2020||23R|
|October 12, 2020||PV6|
|October 19 2020||Replace 3-2.7 Slide Gate||31L|
|October 26, 2020||6-1 & 6-2|
|November 2, 2020||3L|
|November 16, 2020||Repair Bypass Valve at 7RA||7RA, 7RB, 7RC, 7RD|
|December 7, 2020||11R|
|December 14, 2020||4L|
|January 11, 2021||17RA, 17RB, 17RC|
|January 25, 2021||33-2.0||33L|
|February 1, 2020||22L|
|February 8, 2020||24L|
Irrigation Evaluation Cost Share Rebate
The District is offering water users a rebate for mobile lab services. Mobile lab services perform irrigation system evaluations by measuring water rate application, system distribution uniformity and by providing efficiency improvement recommendations. The amount of rebate per field evaluation is limited to 25% of the invoice or $500, whichever is less. Funds are limited, and availability is on a first come, first serve, basis. Application and information are available on the District’s website or by calling Juan Pacheco at (559) 241-6228 for additional assistance.
Water Ordering Procedures for Pumps Enrolled in District Power Programs
The District’s Groundwater Management Program and Temporary Diversion Program provide Western Area Power Administration energy to temporary diversion pumps, groundwater pumps, and drip system booster pumps. The District’s Terms and Conditions for Agricultural Water Service apply to water delivered under these programs. Accordingly, water users are required to place their water orders three days in advance if they are delivering water through a pump enrolled in a District power program. It is critical that water users comply with the ordering procedures to ensure that the District’s request for power to operate these facilities is accurate. Failure to place timely “on” or “off” orders will result in inaccurate power requests and, therefore, increase power costs which are then passed on to program participants.
2020-2021 Groundwater Pumping and Conveyance Project
The District is pursuing approvals to operate the Groundwater Pumping and Conveyance Project, commonly known as the Canal Integration Program (CIP), if the CVP allocation is 20% or less.
If the CIP is approved, participating groundwater wells must collect and conduct initial and ongoing water quality testing to determine if the wells meet the required water quality standards, including the following:
- Title-22 water quality analysis (required every 3 years);
- Testing for specific constituents of concern prior to start-up and weekly for the first four weeks;
- Monthly testing for specific constituents of concern in the second month
Interested water users should contact District staff due to testing laboratory and sampling requirement changes.
Groundwater levels will also be monitored. If a well does not meet the groundwater level standards, then the well cannot participate in the CIP program.
Pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act, the District prepared a Draft Initial Study/Negative Declaration (IS/ND) for the CIP, which is available on the District’s website for public review and comment. The public review period is May 21, 2020 through June 19, 2020. However, the Draft IS/ND will be updated and recirculated for 30 days for public comment after Reclamation releases the San Luis Canal Non-Project Water Pump-in Program 2020 Water Quality Monitoring Plan. Thereafter, a Final IS/ND will be prepared that responds to comments received, if any, and will be presented to the Board for possible certification and approval of the Project at the following regularly scheduled Board meeting.
Water users interested in participating in the CIP and testing their wells in anticipation of an approved CIP, should contact David Vang at (559) 241-6202 or email@example.com.
Lands Available for Lease
The District has several parcels for lease in Fresno and Kings counties. For a list of available land, please contact Cork McIsaac of Agriculture Industries, Inc. at (916) 372-5595 or (800) 822-1415.
Low Interest Irrigation Equipment Lease Program
The District’s Expanded Irrigation System Improvement Program (EISIP) offers low interest loans at 3.1% to water users for the lease-purchase of irrigation system equipment. The EISIP provides funding up to $130,000 towards the purchase of irrigation system equipment, the design of irrigation system and purchase of portable aluminum irrigation pipe, micro irrigation, linear move, and center pivots. Interested water users should contact Juan Pacheco at (559) 241-6228 or firstname.lastname@example.org to begin the application process. Additional information is also available on the District’s website.