Talks Continue on Prop 1 Bond Funding for Water Storage

April 27, 2018 – -The allocation of storage funding from the Proposition 1 water bond moves another step closer next week, when the California Water Commission meets to discuss revised staff recommendations for investing in the public benefits of storage projects. Following a second round of scoring, Water Commission staff determined last week that eight of 11 projects would be eligible for $2.6 billion in bond funds, a significant increase from the $942 million eligibility amount issued by staff in February.

Under the bond’s Water Storage Investment Program projects receive scores according to the public benefits they would bring, including ecosystem improvements, water quality improvements, flood control, emergency response and recreation associated with the proposed projects.

The Sites Project Authority, applying for $1.39 billion in funding for the construction of Sites Reservoir—a large, off-stream storage project in Glenn and Colusa counties—received an increased public benefit score. The score rose from 0.4 to 0.67 resulting in an increased eligibility amount for the project from $662 million to $933.3 million.

The San Joaquin Valley Water Infrastructure Authority is seeking $1.06 billion for the proposed Temperance Flat Dam and Reservoir, on the San Joaquin River upstream from Friant Dam in Fresno and Madera counties. Proponents appealed an earlier low public-benefit ratio score and the score improved slightly, which means the project would be eligible for $171 million.

The Contra Costa Water District requested $459 million to expand the existing Los Vaqueros Reservoir, situated southwest of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta in Contra Costa County. The district improved its earlier public benefit ratio score of 0.46, which increased to 1.77. The staff recommended an allocation of $423 million.

The Water Commission is scheduled to make final funding decisions in July. Learn more about the water projects and scoring by Water Commission staff on the WSIP Project Review portal at cwc.ca.gov/Pages/WSIPSummary.aspx