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Posted on: June 22, 2017

Soquel Creek Water District Releases Revised Notice of Preparation for the Pure Water Soquel Project

Soquel Creek Water District has released a revised Notice of Preparation (NOP) for an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for its project, Pure Water Soquel. The Pure Water Soquel Project is comprised of various facilities and pipelines including: an advanced water purification system; pipelines for conveyance of source water, brine concentrate, and purified water; and groundwater recharge wells. The Project would involve the advanced purification of treated municipal wastewater and replenishing the groundwater basin with purified water to help address critical overdraft conditions in the Santa Cruz Mid-County Groundwater Basin, and aid in preventing further seawater intrusion. The District circulated a NOP for the Pure Water Soquel Project in November 2016. The Project description has since been revised to include consideration of additional advanced water purification facility sites and to eliminate treatment of raw wastewater. Therefore, the District is now circulating a Revised NOP and reopening the EIR scoping period so that the community has the opportunity to comment and provide input on what issues should be evaluated in the EIR.

The District has developed an action oriented, multi-faceted Community Water Plan that serves as the District's roadmap to meet our goal of long-term sustainability by 2040. The Community Water Plan's key components include: water conservation, groundwater management, and securing supplemental supplies. Conservation and groundwater management are helpful, but not sufficient to protect the groundwater basin - the community's sole source of drinking water - from being further contaminated by seawater intrusion. A new source of water supply is still needed. The District has been considering different supply options with groundwater replenishment being one of the options to further evaluate. A feasibility study was prepared in 2016 for the Pure Water Soquel project which led to this next step of environmental review and preparation of an EIR.

In accordance with the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the first step in the EIR process is called scoping, which will define the issues to be evaluated in the EIR. Release of this NOP launches the expanded EIR scoping period which begins June 22, 2017 and closes at 5 pm on July 22, 2017. The full Revised NOP (PDF) is available online. Requests for hard copies of the Revised NOP should be emailed to Melanie Mow Schumacher, P.E. The Revised NOP has also been provided to the following libraries: Capitola Library, Central Public Library, Live Oak Library, Aptos Branch Library, Porter Memorial Library, La Selva Beach Library, Branciforte Library, and Garfield Park Branch Library.

During the 30-day scoping period the public may provide input on the environmental topics, potential effects, mitigation measures, and range of alternatives to be analyzed in the project EIR. Scoping comments may be submitted at the public scoping meeting, by mail, or email between June 22 to July 22, 2017. All comments must be postmarked or received via email by July 22 for consideration in the Draft EIR.

Comments on the proposed project should be submitted to: Melanie Mow Schumacher, P.E. Associate Manager - Special Projects
P.O. Box 1550
Capitola, CA 95010
Email Pure Water Soquel

Soquel Creek Water District will hold a public scoping meeting on Wednesday, July 12, 2017 from 6 to 8 pm at Twin Lakes Church
2701 Cabrillo College Drive
Monschke Hall, Aptos, CA 95003

The meeting will include an open house with information stations and presentations on the project and the CEQA process. Public comments may be provided verbally (recorded by a court reporter), or in writing. Meeting facilities are accessible to persons with disabilities. Requests for special accommodations or translation services should be directed via email to Rebecca Rubin, Public Outreach Coordinator, no later than five days before the meeting or by calling 831-475-8501, ext. 118.

Please email Melanie Mow Schumacher, P.E., Associate Manager - Special Projects or call at 831-475-8501, ext. 153 with any questions about this meeting or the public input process.

For additional information about the project, public meetings, and to access the NOP/Initial Study (NOP/IS).

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