Code Section Group

Water Code - WAT

DIVISION 6. CONSERVATION, DEVELOPMENT, AND UTILIZATION OF STATE WATER RESOURCES [10000 - 12999]

  ( Heading of Division 6 amended by Stats. 1957, Ch. 1932. )

PART 2.11. GROUNDWATER MONITORING [10920 - 10936]

  ( Part 2.11 added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. )

CHAPTER 3. Groundwater Monitoring Program [10927 - 10936]
  ( Chapter 3 added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. )

10927.
  

Any of the following entities may assume responsibility for monitoring and reporting groundwater elevations in all or a part of a basin or subbasin in accordance with this part:

(a) A watermaster or water management engineer appointed by a court or pursuant to statute to administer a final judgment determining rights to groundwater.

(b) (1) A groundwater management agency with statutory authority to manage groundwater pursuant to its principal act that is monitoring groundwater elevations in all or a part of a groundwater basin or subbasin on or before January 1, 2010.

(2) A water replenishment district established pursuant to Division 18 (commencing with Section 60000). This part does not expand or otherwise affect the authority of a water replenishment district relating to monitoring groundwater elevations.

(3) A groundwater sustainability agency with statutory authority to manage groundwater pursuant to Part 2.74 (commencing with Section 10720).

(c) A local agency that is managing all or part of a groundwater basin or subbasin pursuant to Part 2.75 (commencing with Section 10750) and that was monitoring groundwater elevations in all or a part of a groundwater basin or subbasin on or before January 1, 2010, or a local agency or county that is managing all or part of a groundwater basin or subbasin pursuant to any other legally enforceable groundwater management plan with provisions that are substantively similar to those described in that part and that was monitoring groundwater elevations in all or a part of a groundwater basin or subbasin on or before January 1, 2010.

(d) A local agency that is managing all or part of a groundwater basin or subbasin pursuant to an integrated regional water management plan prepared pursuant to Part 2.2 (commencing with Section 10530) that includes a groundwater management component that complies with the requirements of Section 10753.7.

(e) A local agency that has been collecting and reporting groundwater elevations and that does not have an adopted groundwater management plan, if the local agency adopts a groundwater management plan in accordance with Part 2.75 (commencing with Section 10750) by January 1, 2014. The department may authorize the local agency to conduct the monitoring and reporting of groundwater elevations pursuant to this part on an interim basis, until the local agency adopts a groundwater management plan in accordance with Part 2.75 (commencing with Section 10750) or until January 1, 2014, whichever occurs first.

(f) A county that is not managing all or a part of a groundwater basin or subbasin pursuant to a legally enforceable groundwater management plan with provisions that are substantively similar to those described in Part 2.75 (commencing with Section 10750).

(g) A voluntary cooperative groundwater monitoring association formed pursuant to Section 10935.

(Amended by Stats. 2014, Ch. 346, Sec. 5. (SB 1168) Effective January 1, 2015.)

10928.
  

(a) Any entity described in subdivision (a) or (b) of Section 10927 that seeks to assume groundwater monitoring functions in accordance with this part shall notify the department, in writing, on or before January 1, 2011. The notification shall include all of the following information:

(1) The entity’s name, address, telephone number, and any other relevant contact information.

(2) The specific authority described in Section 10927 pursuant to which the entity qualifies to assume the groundwater monitoring functions.

(3) A map showing the area for which the entity is requesting to perform the groundwater monitoring functions.

(4) A statement that the entity will comply with all of the requirements of this part.

(b) Any entity described in subdivision (c), (d), (e), or (f) of Section 10927 that seeks to assume groundwater monitoring functions in accordance with this part shall notify the department, in writing, by January 1, 2011. The information provided in the notification shall include all of the following:

(1) The entity’s name, address, telephone number, and any other relevant contact information.

(2) The specific authority described in Section 10927 pursuant to which the entity qualifies to assume the groundwater monitoring functions.

(3) For entities that seek to qualify pursuant to subdivision (c) or (d) of Section 10927, the notification shall also include a copy of the current groundwater management plan or the groundwater component of the integrated regional water management plan, as appropriate.

(4) For entities that seek to qualify pursuant to subdivision (f) of Section 10927, the notification shall include a statement of intention to meet the requirements of Section 10935.

(5) A map showing the area for which the entity is proposing to perform the groundwater monitoring functions.

(6) A statement that the entity will comply with all of the requirements of this part.

(7) A statement describing the ability and qualifications of the entity to conduct the groundwater monitoring functions required by this part.

(c) The department may request additional information that it deems necessary for the purposes of determining the area that is proposed to be monitored or the qualifications of the entity to perform the groundwater monitoring functions.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

10929.
  

(a) (1) The department shall review all notifications received pursuant to Section 10928.

(2) Upon the receipt of a notification pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 10928, the department shall verify that the notifying entity has the appropriate authority under subdivision (a) or (b) of Section 10927.

(3) Upon the receipt of a notification pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 10928, the department shall do both of the following:

(A) Verify that each notification is complete.

(B) Assess the qualifications of the notifying party.

(b) If the department has questions about the completeness or accuracy of a notification, or the qualifications of a party, the department shall contact the party to resolve any deficiencies. If the department is unable to resolve the deficiencies, the department shall notify the party in writing that the notification will not be considered further until the deficiencies are corrected.

(c) If the department determines that more than one party seeks to become the monitoring entity for the same portion of a basin or subbasin, the department shall consult with the interested parties to determine which party will perform the monitoring functions. In determining which party will perform the monitoring functions under this part, the department shall follow the order in which entities are identified in Section 10927.

(d) The department shall advise each party on the status of its notification within three months of receiving the notification.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

10930.
  

Upon completion of each review pursuant to Section 10929, the department shall do both of the following if it determines that a party will perform monitoring functions under this part:

(a) Notify the party in writing that it is a monitoring entity and the specific portion of the basin or subbasin for which it shall assume groundwater monitoring functions.

(b) Post on the department’s Internet Web site information that identifies the monitoring entity and the portion of the basin or subbasin for which the monitoring entity will be responsible.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

10931.
  

(a) The department shall work cooperatively with each monitoring entity to determine the manner in which groundwater elevation information should be reported to the department pursuant to this part. In determining what information should be reported to the department, the department shall defer to existing monitoring programs if those programs result in information that demonstrates seasonal and long-term trends in groundwater elevations. The department shall collaborate with the State Department of Public Health to ensure that the information reported to the department will not result in the inappropriate disclosure of the physical address or geographical location of drinking water sources, storage facilities, pumping operational data, or treatment facilities.

(b) (1) For the purposes of this part, the department may recommend improvements to an existing monitoring program, including recommendations for additional monitoring wells.

(2) The department may not require additional monitoring wells unless funds are provided for that purpose.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

10932.
  

(a) Monitoring entities shall commence monitoring and reporting groundwater elevations pursuant to this part on or before January 1, 2012.

(b) For purposes of reporting groundwater elevations pursuant to this part, and subject to subdivision (c), a monitoring entity may use alternate monitoring techniques for a basin or subbasin, instead of monitoring groundwater elevations directly through monitoring wells, if the basin or subbasin meets any of the following conditions:

(1) Groundwater elevations are unaffected by land use activities or planned land use activities, or naturally occurring total dissolved solids within the groundwater preclude the use of that water.

(2) It is underlying land that is wholly owned or controlled, individually or collectively, by state, tribal, or federal authorities, and groundwater monitoring information is not available or was requested from, but not provided by, the state, tribal, or federal authorities.

(3) It is underlying an area where geographic or geologic features make monitoring impracticable, including, but not limited to, a basin or subbasin that is inaccessible to well-drilling equipment.

(c) Before using an alternate monitoring technique pursuant to subdivision (b), a monitoring entity shall submit to the department a report, signed by a professional geologist registered pursuant to Section 7850 of the Business and Professions Code, setting forth the factual basis and supporting documentation demonstrating that the basin or subbasin meets any of the conditions set forth in subdivision (b). Upon receiving the report, the department shall determine, in its discretion, whether the monitoring entity may use an alternate monitoring technique, and the alternate monitoring techniques that may be used, for the basin or subbasin. For a basin or subbasin that the department has determined is eligible to use an alternate monitoring technique, the department shall determine whether information provided by the monitoring entity using the alternate monitoring technique is sufficient to comply with the monitoring and reporting requirements of subdivision (a).

(d) (1) Within 60 days of finding that a basin or subbasin no longer meets any of the conditions set forth in subdivision (b), the monitoring entity shall report that finding to the department. Not later than 12 months after providing that report, the monitoring entity shall commence monitoring and reporting groundwater elevations using monitoring wells.

(2) A failure to comply with the report requirements of paragraph (1) shall constitute noncompliance with the monitoring and reporting requirements of subdivision (a).

(e) Every three years following an initial determination by the department pursuant to subdivision (c), a monitoring entity shall submit sufficient information, as may be determined by the department, establishing its continued eligibility to use alternate monitoring techniques in accordance with this section.

(f) A determination by the department pursuant to this section shall be final and conclusive.

(g) For purposes of this section, an “alternate monitoring technique” may include, but is not limited to, one or more of the following, as the department may determine to be appropriate:

(1) Hydrologic records for the basin or subbasin.

(2) Well permits or similar reports from within the area overlying the basin or subbasin.

(3) Aerial photographs.

(4) Remote sensing data.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 280, Sec. 2. (AB 1152) Effective January 1, 2012.)

10933.
  

(a)  The department shall commence to identify the extent of monitoring of groundwater elevations that is being undertaken within each basin and subbasin.

(b) The department shall prioritize groundwater basins and subbasins for the purpose of implementing this section. In prioritizing the basins and subbasins, the department shall, to the extent data are available, consider all of the following:

(1) The population overlying the basin or subbasin.

(2) The rate of current and projected growth of the population overlying the basin or subbasin.

(3) The number of public supply wells that draw from the basin or subbasin.

(4) The total number of wells that draw from the basin or subbasin.

(5) The irrigated acreage overlying the basin or subbasin.

(6) The degree to which persons overlying the basin or subbasin rely on groundwater as their primary source of water.

(7) Any documented impacts on the groundwater within the basin or subbasin, including overdraft, subsidence, saline intrusion, and other water quality degradation.

(8) Any other information determined to be relevant by the department, including adverse impacts on local habitat and local streamflows.

(c) If the department determines that all or part of a basin or subbasin is not being monitored pursuant to this part, the department shall do all of the following:

(1) Attempt to contact all well owners within the area not being monitored.

(2) Determine if there is an interest in establishing any of the following:

(A) A groundwater sustainability plan pursuant to Part 2.74 (commencing with Section 10720).

(B) A groundwater management plan pursuant to Part 2.75 (commencing with Section 10750).

(C) An integrated regional water management plan pursuant to Part 2.2 (commencing with Section 10530) that includes a groundwater management component that complies with the requirements of Section 10753.7.

(D) A voluntary groundwater monitoring association pursuant to Section 10935.

(d) If the department determines that there is sufficient interest in establishing a plan or association described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (c), or if the county agrees to perform the groundwater monitoring functions in accordance with this part, the department shall work cooperatively with the interested parties to comply with the requirements of this part within two years.

(e) If the department determines, with regard to a basin or subbasin, that there is insufficient interest in establishing a plan or association described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (c), and if the county decides not to perform the groundwater monitoring and reporting functions of this part, the department shall do all of the following:

(1) Identify any existing monitoring wells that overlie the basin or subbasin that are owned or operated by the department or any other state or federal agency.

(2) Determine whether the monitoring wells identified pursuant to paragraph (1) provide sufficient information to demonstrate seasonal and long-term trends in groundwater elevations.

(3) If the department determines that the monitoring wells identified pursuant to paragraph (1) provide sufficient information to demonstrate seasonal and long-term trends in groundwater elevations, the department shall not perform groundwater monitoring functions pursuant to Section 10933.5.

(4) If the department determines that the monitoring wells identified pursuant to paragraph (1) provide insufficient information to demonstrate seasonal and long-term trends in groundwater elevations, the department shall perform groundwater monitoring functions pursuant to Section 10933.5.

(Amended by Stats. 2015, Ch. 255, Sec. 18. (SB 13) Effective January 1, 2016.)

10933.5.
  

(a) Consistent with Section 10933, the department shall perform the groundwater monitoring functions for those portions of a basin or subbasin for which no monitoring entity has agreed to perform the groundwater monitoring functions.

(b) Upon determining that it is required to perform groundwater monitoring functions, the department shall notify both of the following entities that it is forming the groundwater monitoring district:

(1) Each well owner within the affected area.

(2) Each county that contains all or a part of the affected area.

(c) The department shall not assess a fee or charge to recover the costs for carrying out its power and duties under this part.

(d) The department may establish regulations to implement this section.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

10933.7.
  

(a) If the department is required to perform groundwater monitoring functions pursuant to Section 10933.5, the county and the entities described in subdivisions (a) to (d), inclusive, of Section 10927 shall not be eligible for a water grant or loan awarded or administered by the state.

(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), the department shall determine that an entity described in subdivision (a) is eligible for a water grant or loan under the circumstances described in subdivision (a) if the entity has submitted to the department for approval documentation demonstrating that its entire service area qualifies as a disadvantaged community.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

10934.
  

(a) For purposes of this part, neither any entity described in Section 10927, nor the department, shall have the authority to do either of the following:

(1) To enter private property without the consent of the property owner.

(2) To require a private property owner to submit groundwater monitoring information to the entity.

(b) This section does not apply to a county or an entity described in subdivisions (a) to (d), inclusive, of Section 10927 that assumed responsibility for monitoring and reporting groundwater elevations prior to the effective date of this part.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

10935.
  

(a) A voluntary cooperative groundwater monitoring association may be formed for the purposes of monitoring groundwater elevations in accordance with this part. The association may be established by contract, a joint powers agreement, a memorandum of agreement, or other form of agreement deemed acceptable by the department.

(b) Upon notification to the department by one or more entities that seek to form a voluntary cooperative groundwater monitoring association, the department shall work cooperatively with the interested parties to facilitate the formation of the association.

(c) The contract or agreement shall include all of the following:

(1) The names of the participants.

(2) The boundaries of the area covered by the agreement.

(3) The name or names of the parties responsible for meeting the requirements of this part.

(4) The method of recovering the costs associated with meeting the requirements of this part.

(5) Other provisions that may be required by the department.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

10936.
  

Costs incurred by the department pursuant to this chapter may be funded from unallocated bond revenues pursuant to paragraph (12) of subdivision (a) of Section 75027 of the Public Resources Code, to the extent those funds are available for those purposes.

(Added by Stats. 2009, 7th Ex. Sess., Ch. 1, Sec. 1. (SB 6 7x) Effective February 3, 2010.)

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