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This Act sets the framework for local authorities to manage sustainable groundwater. The comprehensive three-bill package requires groundwater sustainability agencies to assess local basin conditions and adopt sustainable management plans. The Modesto Subbasin’s sustainability plan will be implemented in 2022.
State intervention is limited to allow for maximum local control over our groundwater resources. Only when a groundwater sustainability agency is not formed and/or fails to create and implement a 20-year sustainability plan will the State take
Proposition 1, the Water Quality, Supply and Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2014, provided $820 million in funding to help create and implement groundwater sustainability plans across the state.
Groundwater sustainability plans for critically over-drafted basins must be completed and adopted by the groundwater sustainability agencies by Jan. 31, 2020. Groundwater sustainability plans for high- and medium-priority basins not in overdraft must be completed and adopted by Jan. 31, 2022. All high- and medium-priority groundwater basins must achieve sustainability within 20 years of the adoption of the groundwater sustainability plan.
If the Department of Water Resources determines that an adequate groundwater sustainability plan has not been adopted or that it is not being implemented in a way
The legislation defines sustainable groundwater management as "the management and use of groundwater in a manner that can be maintained during the planning and implementation horizon without causing undesirable results." The following are examples of undesirable results:
The legislation provides tools and authorities some agencies have previously lacked to manage for sustainability. In addition, it provides substantial time (20 years from the time a groundwater sustainability plan is adopted) to take the actions necessary to achieve sustainability.