Water Supply Update
It Rained, It Snowed! Locally We Still Haven't Recovered
This year we've had record rain and snow! California's snowpack levels are above normal and the rain has helped pull much of California out of a drought. This is good news for our imported water supply that comes from Northern California. But below the surface, in our local groundwater basins, the effects of the drought persist. One year of wet weather won't erase the previous seven years of dry weather that have severely impacted our local groundwater basins. Unfortunately, when it comes to groundwater it will take many slow, soaking rains for the water to filter through the ground. RCWD continues to encourage all customers to remain water efficient in all daily activities.
Where Our Water Comes From
Nearly 60 percent of our water is imported from the California Bay Delta and the Colorado River aqueduct. It travels over 500 miles through a series of tunnels, aqueducts and pipelines to reach us. The remaining 40 percent of our water supply is from our local groundwater basins. The District also uses water in Vail Lake as part of its recharge for the groundwater basin. Vail Lake's water level is currently at 35% of normal operating capacity.
District In Stage 3a
In order to protect our groundwater supply, the District is currently in Stage 3a of the Water Shortage Contingency Plan. The District will do further assessments of the groundwater and other local water supplies at the end of the year. The Board of Director’s will carefully review the results of the groundwater assessment and determine how to move forward in 2020.
Stage 3a gives residential, multi-family and landscape customers their full Tier 1 and Tier 2 (efficient budgets), Tier 3 (the inefficient tier) and Tier 4 (wasteful tier). The additional funds being paid at the Tier 4 rate go directly to capital projects that enhance and build resiliency in our local water supply and water storage capacity that help protect us against the next drought.
For additional information related to Stage 3a, please view the Water Shortage Contingency Plan (PDF) for the District’s Water Shortage Contingency Plan information.
Current Drought Status
Residential, Multi-Family and Landscape Customers Tier 3 Water Budgets are reinstated. Rolling water budgets continue to be suspended; No variances or adjustments will be approved for filling swimming pools, establishing or expanding landscape area, leaks not repaired within 48 hours, and existing outdoor water budgets.
RCWD is closely monitoring the water supply situation and will provide additional information as the District implements mandatory water efficiency measures.