2023-24 District Groundwater Recharge Program Agreement Private Recharge Facility Use for $100/AF
The District plans to beneficially use the abundant supply of surface water anticipated in the 2023-24 water contract year to implement the best management practices identified in the Groundwater Sustainability Plan. These actions will restore groundwater levels and balance demand for irrigation water with supply. Westlands Water District requests that landowners with approved groundwater recharge projects (projects) recharge water on behalf of the District.
The District will pay for the surface water and compensate landowners $100 per acre foot of net groundwater recharged. The District anticipates up to 100,000 AF of groundwater could be recharged through this program.
Interested landowners with approved projects are asked to submit the attached agreement. Surface water will be made available based on the anticipated capacity of the project and on a first come, first served basis thereafter. The District retains the right to reject applications based on anticipated recharge rate and project capacity. Landowners should be aware that District staff will conduct inspections to ensure compliance with the approved recharge program and agreement.
As a reminder, the Board of Directors approved an expedited, single-page 2023-24 Groundwater Recharge Program Application that is automatically approved upon submittal for lands that are not drainage impaired and eligible for the private recharge facility program. Submission of an application does not obligate the water user to participate in the $100/AF recharge program and does not obligate a grower to deliver surface water for recharge. All growers with approved projects are encouraged to apply.
If you have any questions concerning 2023-24 District Groundwater Recharge Program Agreement, please contact Russ Freeman at (559) 241-6241 or Katarina Campbell at (559) 241-6226.
Availability of Zero Rate Surface Water for Landowners or Water Users with Approved Recharge Facilities
At a Special Board Meeting on March 27, 2023, the Westlands Water District Board directed staff to implement a program to offer zero rate surface water to landowners or water users that apply the water to approved recharge projects and generate groundwater credits. By taking zero rate water, the landowner agrees to a 50% split with the District on groundwater credits that are generated during the program (landowner or water user will retain 50% of the net generated groundwater credits and the District will retain the other 50%). The program is limited to a two-week time frame, or cost of $2,000,000, or the use of 20,000 acre-feet of water, whichever comes first.
To participate in the program, a landowner or water user must notify the District of their desire to take zero rate water and submit a picture of the meter of the approved recharge project, and submit the attached agreement. Water will be made available based on anticipated capacity of the project on a first come first served basis. Zero rate water will not be allocated to water users like other District water categories. Instead, the District will administratively allocate and use the water at the end of the billing cycle. A water user’s account will not be affected by the use of zero rate water. Landowners should be aware that District staff will conduct inspections to ensure compliance with the approved recharge program and agreement.
If you have any questions concerning Availability of Zero Rate Surface Water for Landowners or Water Users with Approved Recharge Facilities, please contact Stephen Farmer at (559) 241-6240.