Seats Available on New Groundwater Advisory Committees

     

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    2017-06-19

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - June 19, 2017

    Contact: Ann DuBay - 707.524.8378 (office), 707.322.8185 (cell), Ann.DuBay@scwa.ca.gov

    Santa Rosa, CA – People who are interested in groundwater and who live in the Santa Rosa Plain or in Sonoma Valley groundwater basins, are urged to apply for a seat on one of the new groundwater advisory committees.

    The new advisory committees will provide input and feedback on policies, programs and projects to the boards of the Santa Rosa Plain and Sonoma Valley groundwater sustainability agencies (GSAs). These agencies were formed to meet the requirements of California’s historic Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA), which went into effect in 2015. (A hearing for the Petaluma Valley Groundwater Sustainability Agency is slated for June 22, 5:30 p.m. at the Lucchesi Community Center, in Petaluma. It is anticipated that the Petaluma Valley GSA board will also approve a process to create an advisory committee.)

    “This is an opportunity for well owners to share your ideas, thoughts and advice regarding new groundwater management,” said Lynda Hopkins, Chairwoman of the Santa Rosa Plain GSA board. “The board is looking for committed individuals who can roll up their sleeves and work through the many issues that will arise as we form this new agency.”

    “California is regulating groundwater use for the first time in its history, and state leaders fortunately decided to let local agencies take the lead,” said Susan Gorin, Chairwoman of the Sonoma Valley GSA board. “To succeed, we need people who are willing to work together and to share their knowledge and experience.”

    The Santa Rosa Plain Advisory Committee consists of 18 members, seven of which will be appointed by the Santa Rosa Plain GSA board. To ensure the advisory committee includes a variety of perspectives, the board is seeking two rural residential well owners, two agricultural representatives, two environmental representatives and one business representative. While the majority of the appointees must live within the Santa Rosa Plain groundwater basin, the board may appoint one person who lives within the larger Santa Rosa Plain watershed.

    “We look forward to appointing people who really care about groundwater, and who are eager to represent the interests of a broad group of groundwater users,” said Tom Schwedhelm, Vice-Chairman of the Santa Rosa Plain GSA board.

    The Sonoma Valley GSA consists of 12 members, six of which will be appointed by the Sonoma Valley GSA board. The board is seeking one rural residential well owner, one agricultural representative, one environmental representative, one business representative and two “at-large” community representatives (preferably one who is a hydrogeologist or geologist).

    For both advisory committee, terms will be two-years (after initial staggered terms), and the advisory committees will meet every other month for two to three hours. Advisory committee members should also expect to spend several hours reading materials and preparing for meetings. Strong consideration will be given to candidates who have the backing of multiple organizations or individuals within their interest group.

    The deadline for submitting applications is July 31, 2017. Additional information and the application for the Santa Rosa Plain GSA Advisory Committee can be found at http://sonomacountygroundwater.org/srp-advisory-committee/ and for the Sonoma Valley GSA Advisory Committee application at http://sonomacountygroundwater.org/sv-advisory-committee/ .

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