Santa Rosa Plain Groundwater

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    The Santa Rosa Plain, home to approximately half of the population of Sonoma County, faces growth in population and demand for water. The challenge of increasing demand and other uncertainties necessitates thoughtful management of the important groundwater resources of the Santa Rosa Plain. 


    Sonoma County Sustainable Groundwater Management Website

    A new website has launched providing the most up-to-date information on the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act implementation in Sonoma County:


    Existing SRP Basin Advisory Panel

    To address these challenges, the Water Agency worked with a balanced group of stakeholders called the Basin Advisory Panel to develop a plan for managing these groundwater resources through a collaborative process. The Water Agency Board of Directors approved the Plan in fall 2014. The Plan is a living document that can adapt to changing conditions. Plan implementation is structured to encourage an open, collaborative and cooperative process for groundwater management activities guided by the Basin Advisory Panel and a Technical Advisory Committee. 


    What’s New in 2016?

    In September 2014, Governor Brown signed legislation requiring that California’s critical groundwater resources be sustainably managed by local agencies. The Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) gives local agencies (cities, counties and water districts) powers to sustainably manage groundwater over the long-term, and requires Groundwater Sustainability Agencies (GSAs) to be formed and Groundwater Sustainability Plans (GSPs) developed for designated medium- and high-priority groundwater basins/subbasins.  The Santa Rosa Plain groundwater sub-basin (defined in DWR’s Bulletin 118) is identified as a medium priority basin/subbasin and is, therefore, subject to the requirements of SGMA. 

    The first step toward implementing the new law is to form a Groundwater Sustainability Agency (GSA) for the Santa Rosa Plain groundwater basin. In the meantime, the existing Lead Agency, Panel and TAC will continue to function under the Plan. The existing stakeholder participation framework provides a strong basis for the collaborative processes encouraged under SGMA, including the use of advisory groups and considering the interests of the beneficial uses and users of groundwater

    The second step required under SGMA will be to develop a new groundwater sustainability plan. The existing Plan forms a strong foundation upon which to build and develop the new GSP. This process may include continuing to implement recommended Plan actions, such as those in the Plan’s Stakeholder Involvement and Monitoring & Modeling Components.

    For further information on the new groundwater law and SGMA activities in Sonoma County, visit


    Groundwater Management Plan Information and Documents


    Contact Information

    Marcus Trotta
    Sonoma County Water Agency
    (707) 547-1978