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Placer County Water Agency Updates

AUBURN -- The Placer County Water Agency releases water from its Middle Fork American River Project to meet water needs in Placer County.  In dry years the Agency can release additional water to also benefit the fishery of the lower American River.  This is part of PCWA's commitment to regional collaboration in the Sacramento Water Forum agreement.

 Under actions taken Thursday (Feb. 7) by the PCWA Board of Directors, the agency has taken steps to sell some of that additional dry year water to the East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) once it flows out of the lower American River.  PCWA Director of Strategic Affairs Einar Maisch said, "Staff has been working closely with representatives of EBMUD and it appears that our commitment to release water for lower American River fishery benefits matches very closely with customer needs during dry years in that district." He said the two agencies are working on terms of a long-term supply contract but that amounts, prices and other details have yet to be determined. 

Maisch also reported that the agency anticipates it may need to spend around $5 million to meet new criteria of the State Water Resources Control Board to achieve renewal of agency water rights of the Middle Fork American River Project.  The Board of Directors approved a $1 million budget transfer to fund the next phase in the water rights renewal process. 

In other business, PCWA directors:

  • approved the sale of up to 73.5 miner's inches of irrigation water in areas west of Newcastle where service restrictions and a waiting list have been in effect because of capacity issues on the Banvard and Lower Banvard canals.  PCWA has made significant improvements to the canals and water users have improved private systems to allow for the higher flows.  The water will be offered to existing customers, new customers and winter water users.  Customers are being notified of the change; prospective customers are invited to contact PCWA Customer Services.
  • heard a presentation from John Kingsbury, executive director of the Mountain Counties Water Resources Association (MCWRA), of which PCWA is a longtime active member.  Kingsbury briefed the board on the group's recent accomplishments and announced a Mar. 15 conference in Auburn that is expected to attract water leaders from across the state.
  • heard a briefing from Deputy Director of Customer Services Linda Yager on the agency's upcoming "Green Gardener at Home" series of classes on effective landscaping and efficient water use.  The 10-week Tuesday evening series starts Feb. 26.  Space is limited.  For information and registration, call PCWA Customer Services at (530) 823-4850 or e-mail
  • welcomed guest Elisa Noble, who is the new district manager for the Placer County Resource Conservation District.  She joined the district in January.

The PCWA Board of Directors will next meet in adjourned session at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 19, at the PCWA Business Center, 144 Ferguson Road, in Auburn.  The next regular meeting of the PCWA board is scheduled for 2 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 21. PCWA board meetings are open to the public.  Information on PCWA board meetings may be obtained through the Clerk to the Board at (530) 823-4850 or (800) 464-0030. PCWA information is also posted at

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