Public Process Narrowing Options


 Soquel Creek Water District relies entirely on groundwater for its water supply which is overpumped and experiencing seawater intrusion, a condition that allows seawater to enter and contaminate the groundwater supply. The District had been evaluating a joint scwd2 Regional Seawater Desalination Project with the City of Santa Cruz since 2007; however, in August 2013 the City of Santa Cruz "reset" their efforts to gather more community input on water alternatives.  This led  the District to initiate looking  at back-up supplemental water supply options should that project no longer be considered. 

The process

The District's process was open, transparent, and conducted from September 2013 to August 2014 through 13 public meetings that covered Water Supply Planning Objectives and Criteria Selection for Evaluation (September 2013), Exploration of Various Back-Up Water Supply Options (October 2013-July 2014) and Alternatives Based Evaluation and Analysis and Selection of Options to further consider (July -August 2014).  Meeting materials (including powerpoint presentations and memos) are below.

Selection of Options to Further Evaluate

At the August 26, 2014 Supply Workshop, the Board evaluated six supply options and identified groundwater replenishment using recycled water and water transfer projects to evaluate further. The District is moving forward  to develop additional information related to feasibility, cost, environmental and legal considerations.  The Board also asked staff to continue to track and monitor the activities of the DeepWater Desalination Project being pursued in Moss Landing.  In addition, the District will continue to work with our customers and community stakeholders to identify the best path forward to securing an additional water supply.


Exploratory Meetings and Topics (including Meeting Materials)

What led the Board of Directors to select groundwater replenishment and surface water transfers to further evaluate?  The Board of Directors  conducted 13 public meetings to discuss back-up water supply options.  There are no further exploratory discussions meetings scheduled since the Board completed its single-topic discussions and selected recycled water and water transfer project to further evaluate.

September 17, 2013 – Water Supply Planning Objectives and Criteria Selection for Evaluation (Review of 2012 IRP Plan Goals and Planning Objectives and discuss new options to consider)

October 15, 2013 – Desalination Options

November 5 – Surface Water Options

January 7, 2014 – Water Use Reduction Option:  Mandatory Water Rationing

February 4 – Recycled Water Options

March 4 – Groundwater Options (including Groundwater Law and current Mid-County Management)

March 18, 2014 - Status Report on Back -Up Options Evaluation

April 1, 2014 - Water Use Reduction Option: Water Use Reduction Program- Phase 1 (Accelerating Conservation) using water budgets and reducing outdoor use)

April 29 - Water Use Reduction Option: Continuation of Will Serve Letters Prior to Consideration of a Moratorium and Public Survey 2014 Report

June 3 – Water Use Reduction Option: Public Hearing on Declaring a Moratorium and Groundwater Emergency and/or a Stage 3 water shortage emergency

June 17 - Water Use Reduction Option:  Adoption of GW Emergency and Stage 3 Water Shortage; also adoption of WDO expansion and more public input on CONSERVATIONplus Program

July 15, 2014 - Evaluation: Narrative Information on Back-Up Supplemental Supply Options with Common Criteria and Conceptual Technical Evaluation

August 12 - Water Use Reduction Option:  First Reading of CONSERVATIONplus Ordinance 14-02

August 26, 2014 - Evaluation: Scoring and Ranking Back-Up Options

  • Board Packet - including staff memo and powerpoint presentation
  • Minutes from the 8/26/2014 meeting