May 13, 2013

WRD Approves Groundwater Replenishment Assessment

Replenishment Assessment is approved after extensive & transparent process

The Water Replenishment District of Southern California (WRD) approved its Replenishment Assessment (RA) of $268.00 for 2013-2014 at a public hearing on May 10, 2013 after having nearly a dozen budget workshops to ensure that stakeholders understood the details of the RA. The funds generated from the RA cover the cost of water purchased to replenish the two largest and most utilized groundwater basins in Southern California.

The RA was approved after an extensive and transparent process to inform all parcel owners and groundwater pumping rights holders in the WRD service area. More than 800,000 notices were sent to every record owner of every parcel of real property within its jurisdiction that services 4 million residents in 43 cities covering over 420 sq miles.

WRD has garnered multiple awards for its budget and financial reporting processes over the past 10 years and was recently awarded the highest recognition in the area of government and financial accounting by the Government Financial Officers Assn.

Groundwater accounts for 40% of the overall water supply in WRD's service area, and is about one-fourth the cost of the alternative‚ÄĒimported water from the environmentally sensitive Bay Delta and the drought plagued Colorado River. Moreover, WRD continues to make significant progress on its effort to develop local water replenishment sources to eliminate our need for these expensive and unreliable imported water supplies. This effort, known as WRD's WIN Program, or Water Independence Now, will be complete in approximately five years, and upon completion will assure a completely locally sustainable groundwater supply for the residents within the WRD service area and will minimize future rate increases. The new RA is critical to helping achieve WRD's goal for 100% independence from costly and unreliable imported water.

"This Replenishment Assessment allows us to continue to develop a safe, affordable and reliable groundwater supply for our region and our future," said Albert Robles, WRD board president. "WRD is very aware and sensitive to the region's economic state, and accordingly has worked very hard to minimize the increase by reducing its own costs by almost $3 million dollars over the last two years to help offset increasing water costs to WRD."