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Author: Rebecca Quist

A groundwater credit program and surface water market may not be too far off. MAGSA awards contract to Geosyntec to study the concepts.

Meeting the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act’s (SGMA) deadline for sustainable groundwater levels by 2040 is going to require creative solutions in many areas of California. Thanks to grant funding, MAGSA has hired engineering firm Geosyntec to conduct a study on one forward-thinking solution: a groundwater credit and surface water marketing program.

At the March 12, 2020 Board Meeting, the Board approved awarding engineering firm Geosyntec a contract to study the concepts. “We commend the McMullin Area GSA Board for getting ahead of the curve on studying water markets and groundwater credits, and look forward to working with stakeholders, staff and the Board on solutions that best fit the needs of landowners in the area,” stated Amer Hussain, the lead Geosyntec engineer on the study.

Geosyntec has begun work and projects the study will be complete by May 2021.

MAGSA posted a Request for Proposals in December seeking qualified contractors/firms to complete tasks associated with project management and administration, outreach and partnership building, scoping and planning, and water marketing strategy development. The proposal review process was conducted by an ad hoc committee of two stakeholders, one board member, and MAGSA’s General Manager.

The study is funded through a $193,000 WaterSMART grant awarded by the US Bureau of Reclamation, with a cost-share of $193,000. The total project cost is $386,000.

While a water marketing program would entail a proactive strategy for bringing surface water into the area, a groundwater credit system focuses on allocating groundwater resources among landowners within the GSA. Under a groundwater credit system, landowners would be given a groundwater allocation to either keep, trade, or sell to other landowners within the GSA. A well-designed program would improve water use efficiency and provide flexibility for MAGSA landowners.

The Consultant team will be out in the Agency soon providing information and background on these critical topics and will be seeking feedback and opinion from our Stakeholders to assist them in arriving at the best possible solutions tailored specifically for MAGSA.

Keep checking back on the website and in your e-mail inbox (and on Twitter!) for further opportunities to participate in the discussions. If you have not already done so, please make sure MAGSA has current, up-to-date email contact information for you so that we may not lose our outstanding stakeholder input pipeline!

MAGSA will respond and adapt to evolving COVID-19 circumstances; April 1 Board Meeting cancelled

As the circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic continue to evolve, MAGSA will respond, adjust and adapt to those circumstances with the health and safety of its stakeholders, Directors, staff, and the broader community as its number one concern.

Due to lack of available meeting facilities, MAGSA has cancelled its April 1 Board Meeting, with tentative plans to hold a meeting on April 15. If circumstances continue to make in-person meetings difficult, MAGSA is working on an alternative to make Board Meetings available to the public via live webinar or similar technology. Check the website regularly for updates.

MAGSA remains confident that the growers, business owners, and community residents that make up its service area are incredibly resilient. Despite uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we will continue to move in a forward direction alongside our stakeholders to secure a thriving and sustainable future.

While at all times operating under recommended precautions, MAGSA Directors and staff are working continuously on behalf of the landowners we serve, making forward progress on Groundwater Sustainability Plan implementation to close the gap on groundwater sustainability in the Kings Subbasin.

April 1 Board Meeting Cancelled

Cancellation notice

Due to lack of available meeting facilities, MAGSA has cancelled its April 1 Board Meeting, with tentative plans to hold a meeting on April 15.

If circumstances continue to make in-person meetings difficult, MAGSA is working on an alternative to make Board Meetings available to the public via live webinar or similar technology.

Check the website regularly for updates.

March 4 Board Meeting Cancelled

The regular McMullin Area GSA Board Meeting scheduled on Wednesday, March 4, 2020 has been cancelled.

A Special Board Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, March 12, 2020 at 2:00 pm at the Kerman Community Center.

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