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BEFORE THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
OF THE COUNTY OF IMPERIAL

RESOLUTION OF THE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

OF THE COUNTY OF IMPERIAL ON THE WATER TRANSFER BETWEEN IID AND SDCWA

 

WHEREAS, the Imperial County Board of Supervisors, (hereinafter Board), is the one governing board elected by all County voters as the general unit of local government, thereby serving all County residents; and,

WHEREAS, the board is charged by the California Constitution Article XI Section 7 to protect the health, safety, environment, economic diversity, and the quality of life of its residents; and,

WHEREAS, the Board has actively been involved in the review of the proposed water transfer, including the participation at the hearings before the State Water Resources Control Board; and,

WHEREAS, the Board of has reviewed and commented on the Water Transfer Environmental Impact Report (EIR) / Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and on the Quantification Settlement Agreement (QSA) EIR; and,

WHEREAS, the board has and continues to have, grave concerns over the long-term impacts of this proposed transfer, and has expressed its concerns to the IID, SDCWA, USBR, and the State Water Resources Control Board of the State of California; and,

WHEREAS, the Board, originally and steadfastly opposed any fallowing of farm land to offset the water needed to the transfer; and,

WHEREAS, the Board, holds the conviction that the transfer could be and should be accommodated only through system and on-farm conservation; and,

WHEREAS, the Board, recognizes that a "temporary" transfer of water to SDCWA could and should be supported, in order to assist urban California water districts in living within California's Colorado River allocation, provided that any costs, and all negative environmental and socio-economic impacts, are adequately mitigated; and,

WHEREAS, the draft decision dated September 26, 2002 by the State Water Resources Control Board essentially failed to look beyond a 15-year period and fails to allow a termination of the transfer obligations by IID, should whatever transfer that is approved, prove environmentally or economically unsound at the conclusion of the 15-year period; and,

WHEREAS, the IID, SDCWA, and State Water Resources Control Board erroneously assume that the transfer will not induce growth in the San Diego region, and fail to recognize the obligation of San Diego to mitigate growth that relied and continues to rely on surplus Colorado River water no longer available, by developing a permanent alternative sustainable source of water, such as desalination; and,

WHEREAS, the Board has expressed grave concern over the impacts of the transfer on the Salton Sea, and on air quality in particular, including other environmental problems, and all parties must recognize that the transfer cannot add to them; and,

WHEREAS, the Board should have been more directly included and involved in the transfer process; and,

WHEREAS, the Board expresses grave concern over the divisiveness this project has created between groups of people in the Valley, all of which was and is unnecessary if the transferring and QSA parties reach a fair and equitable agreement:

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Board of Supervisors that:

1) The Board cautiously supports the non-permanent transfer of water between IID, (which holds the water rights in trust), and the SDCWA, proved it does not jeopardize IID's Colorado River allocation as decreed by the Supreme Court, nor alter the IID's secured rights to the Colorado River water;

2) The Board supports the transfer subject to SDCWA's development of a capacity to produce at least 50,000 acre feet of desalinated water from its own facilities within the next 15 years;

3) The Board must be involved and have a definite role in the development of any "fallowing" plan that will or may need to be designed in order for a "fallowing" program to be implemented; and as mandated by SB 482 as enacted, the Board's approval of the mitigation plan for environmental and economic impacts will be necessary;

4) The Board through its groundwater ordinance shall exercise its authority to regulate extractions of groundwater if any, from any aquifer within Imperial County, including those in the East Mesa.

5) The transfer beneficiaries shall fund ICAPCD monitoring and assessment of air quality impacts as the transfer proceeds, fund the development of air quality mitigation specifications, and fund the implementation of those measures adopted by the ICAPCD.

6) The Board, expresses its preference for mitigation measures to be developed and implemented in a manner set forth in IID's proposed amendment to the July 3rd version of SB 482 (see attached);

7) The Board by supporting the transfer under the conditions stated supports the IID in reaching a fair and equitable agreement with SDCWA, however, with the understanding that if significant "socio-economic" impacts or environmental impacts occur in the Valley during the next 15 years, the IID have the authority to voluntarily withdraw without penalty from its obligations under the transfer agreement;

8) The Board by supporting the transfer under the conditions stated in no way abrogates its legal rights to protect the interests of the County of Imperial, should the final agreement not be legally, environmentally, or socio-economically acceptable to the County.

PASSED AND ADOPTED, by the Board of Supervisors, County of Imperial, State of California, this 8th day of October, 2002, by the following roll call vote

_________________________________                _____________________________

Hank Kuiper, Chairman                                     Gary Wyatt, Supervisor, District 4

Imperial County Board of Supervisors                 Imperial County Board of Supervisors



_________________________________                 Wally Leimgruber, Supervisor

Tony Tirado, Supervisor District 1                       District 5

Imperial County Board of Supervisors                 Imperial County Board of Supervisors



__________________________________

Joe Maruca, Supervisor District 3

Imperial County Board of Supervisors



_______________________________

ALBERT ESPINOZA
Clerk of the Board of Supervisors,
County of Imperial

10/08/02
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