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SGMA Amendments for 2017

In 2016, the California Legislature made moderate amendments to the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA), which go into effect on January 1, 2017. You can find an annotated version of SGMA here, including all the newest changes. Early in 2017, look for a revised version of my earlier white paper on the significant groundwater law, including regulations adopted by the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) and the formation of groundwater sustainability agencies (GSAs) across the state.

Bills adopted in 2016 related to SGMA included:

  • Assembly Bill 2874 (Gaines), which requires a GSA to provide notice of any groundwater management fee increase to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), if any public utility extracts water from the basin;
  • Senate Bill 37 (Vidak), which added the Kings River East Groundwater Sustainability Agency to the list of statutory GSAs; and
  • Senate Bill 564 (Cannella), which added the North Fork Kings Groundwater Sustainability Agency to the list of statutory GSAs.

In addition, several bills were rejected by the Legislature, including:

  • Assembly Bill 938 (Rodriguez), which would have allowed a watermaster or local agency administering an adjudicated groundwater basin to elect that the basin be subject to SGMA; and
  • Senate Bill 1317 (Wolk), which would have required cities and counties to establish programs for issuance of permits for new groundwater wells in any high- or medium-priority basin, and prohibited the issuance of a permit in any basin that is designated by DWR as subject to critical conditions of overdraft.

Fortunately, it is supposed to rain this week across much of California, so those dark clouds may contribute needed water supplies.

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Welcome to the New Blog!

Next time you visit my blog, you will see a complete redesign. Hopefully the aesthetic is improved, but the real reason for the change was substantive. The new design allows me to post pages that can serve as long-term resources for readers, rather than revolving blog entries. You will see more of those resource pages being added over the next few months. Common topics will include private water companies, water transfers and markets, infrastructure and sustainable water management. If you have suggestions for helpful resources, please reach out and I may be able to add.

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PrivateWaterLaw Named Top 50 Environmental Law Blog

I am honored to report that the PrivateWaterLaw Blog has been named one of the LexisNexis Top 50 Environmental Law and Climate Change Blogs for 2011. According to LexisNexis, the award “recognizes preeminent thought leaders in the blogosphere and creates an invaluable content aggregate for all segments of the environmental law and climate change practice.”

I encourage you to visit the LexisNexis Community and check out the other Top 50 blogs that were included.

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PrivateWaterLaw Blog Named Candidate for Top 50 Environmental Law & Climate Change Blogs

PrivateWaterLaw Blog has been honored with a nomination for the LexisNexis Top 50 Environmental Law & Climate Change Blogs for 2011. If you’d like to show your support of this blog, please consider submitting a comment on the announcement page by Monday, February 14.