MCWD, LADWP reach agreement

– Press release from the Mammoth Community Water District and Los Angeles Department of Water and Power:

CITY OF LOS ANGELES’ DEPARTMENT OF WATER AND POWER AND MAMMOTH COMMUNITY WATER DISTRICT REACH HISTORIC SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT, CREATING A LONG-TERM SOLUTION TO SAFEGUARD BOTH COMMUNITIES’ WATER SUPPLIES

Agreement Will Increase Water Conservation Efforts and Resolve

Two Pending Court Cases Involving Mammoth’s Water Supply

tomsmith

[Mammoth Lakes CA and Los Angeles CA, July 2, 2013]–The boards of the City of Los Angeles’ Department of Water and Power (LADWP) and Mammoth Community Water District (MCWD) reached a formal settlement this week ending potentially costly litigation over water. The agreement assures both LADWP and MCWD of water from Mammoth Creek and the Owens River, while providing funds for collaborative water conservation opportunities in the region.

Under the terms of the agreement, MCWD will be able to meet the community’s projected water demands at build-out of 4,387 acre-feet, through surface water diversions, groundwater extractions and recycled water. In exchange, MCWD agreed to help pay for LADWP to carry out water conservation and efficiency measures in the Mammoth Creek and Owens River watersheds. Overall, nearly 60 percent of the water used by MCWD is already returned to the downstream environment naturally and the conservation efforts will net an additional 1,779 acre-feet of water annually. The new water conservation efforts will save enough water so that this agreement will not have a negative impact on LADWP’s water customers.

“For more than 60 years, the Mammoth community has depended on water from Mammoth Creek to serve our growing community,” said Tom Smith, President of the Mammoth Community Water District Board. “This agreement puts to rest any lingering questions about access to the water necessary to serve the vibrant community that prospers here into the future. We want to thank LADWP for working with us to resolve this issue.”

“This agreement is truly a win-win,” said LADWP General Manager Ron Nichols. “The Mammoth Lakes community is assured of the water it needs to flourish, and the water conservation efforts funded by MCWD will return water to LADWP’s water system – effectively replacing water that would have been used by MCWD. LADWP looks forward to working hand-in-hand with MCWD and the people of the Mammoth Lakes community in the years to come to equitably meet our respective communities’ needs.”

Key terms of the agreement, which has now been approved by the Boards of both LADWP and MCWD, include:

• A payment of $3.4 million now and a payment in approximately 50 years of $2.4 million, adjusted for inflation, by MCWD to LADWP for use in implementing and maintaining water conservation and water use efficiency actions in the Mammoth Creek and Owen’s Valley watersheds.

• MCWD’s ability to continue to divert up to 2,760 acre-feet of water annually from Mammoth Creek and to meet the projected water needs of the community and the local travel and tourism economy at build-out.

• The establishment of a system that will allow MCWD and LADWP to calculate, and monitor the amount of water being diverted by MCWD and the total consumptive use associated with MCWD’s diversions.

• The dismissal by LADWP of two pending lawsuits against MCWD: A challenge to MCWD’s final Environmental Impact Report for the Mammoth Creek Fishery Bypass Flows, and a challenge to MCWD’s approval of its 2010 Urban Water Management Plan.

“This agreement shows that it is possible for reasonable parties to come together and reach mutually beneficial arrangements to protect both scarce water supplies and the environment,” concluded LADWP General Manager Nichols. “We are eager to begin our joint work with MCWD to implement this agreement.”

“We appreciate the rational approach that LADWP took in resolving these matters,” stated MCWD Board President Smith. “Even though this is a minimal amount of water for L.A., it is critical to our community’s future. This agreement is something that works for all of us, while also benefitting the environment and conservation.”

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7 Responses to MCWD, LADWP reach agreement

  1. Philip Anaya July 11, 2013 at 5:29 pm #

    Is Mammoth Lakes finally catching a break ? Is $5.8 million dollars a good deal or not ? 50 years of 2,760 acre feet of water is 138,000 acre feet for only $5.8 million bucks. Right now without the $2.4 million inflation adjustment that’s $5.8 million dollars divided by 138,000 AF or about $42.03 an acre foot. Does that seem reasonable ? Will the Bishop golf course get the same deal . Or is this Mammoth Lakes paying DWP for acre feet that they are already entitled to and who is paying the lawyers. What a bunch of brown bananas.
    I’m sorry Mr. Smith but I do not agree that LADWP knows much about a rational approach when they have sued the Water District and threatened the water supply of the Town . I’m thinking this sounds more like coercion and deprivation.
    I’m glad the Towns water supply is now assured, that’s worth something , and I hope that DWP spends your rate payers dollars well. Being a DWP rate payer myself I’m hoping that DWP spends all it’s dollars resolving the difficulties and issues of it’s infrastructure rather than welfare and handouts to law firms.

     
  2. reduce and reuse July 11, 2013 at 7:08 pm #

    SEND IT TO LA GRAY!

     
  3. MK July 11, 2013 at 7:12 pm #

    “This agreement shows that it is possible for reasonable parties to come together and reach mutually beneficial arrangements to protect both scarce water supplies and the environment,” concluded LADWP General Manager Nichols. “We are eager to begin our joint work with MCWD to implement this agreement.”

    “We appreciate the rational approach that LADWP took in resolving these matters,” stated MCWD Board President Smith. “Even though this is a minimal amount of water for L.A., it is critical to our community’s future. This agreement is something that works for all of us, while also benefitting the environment and conservation.”

    Am I missing something? Why are we paying DWP to implement things we should be doing. The money should be placed in escrow for MCWD to use as projects are completed. GEE WIZZ is anyone looking out for us in Mammoth?

    If we had the rights to the water and DWP was wrong then Why are we paying out again millions of dollars?

    I understand settling soon and cheaper. But 3 million is nothing to DWP but it is a lot for us here in Mammoth. Why are

     
  4. Ken Warner July 11, 2013 at 9:55 pm #

    “…will return water to LADWP’s water system… ”

    With genuine High Country pee and poop as extras…

     
  5. MJA July 12, 2013 at 7:28 am #

    What a deal! Mammoth pays out more millions, (how many millions can the people of Mammoth afford to pay?) but this time for water they already HAD the rights too. And DWP gets to control and slowly turn off the faucet to Mammoth or what they call implementing and maintaining conservation.
    Surely its a win win for DWP and a lose lose for poor Mammoth. =

     
    • $$$ in Mammoth July 12, 2013 at 2:56 pm #

      MJA –

      Mammoth Lakes has a stash of money behind it you could barely imagine.
      So, don’t worry about “poor Mammoth.”

       
  6. Really ? July 12, 2013 at 4:06 pm #

    Greed is the only seed that grows in the Owens Valley.

     

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