Code Section Group

Water Code - WAT

DIVISION 7. WATER QUALITY [13000 - 16104]

  ( Division 7 repealed and added by Stats. 1969, Ch. 482. )

CHAPTER 23. The San Joaquin Valley Drainage Relief Act [14900 - 14920]

  ( Chapter 23 added by Stats. 1992, Ch. 959, Sec. 1. )

ARTICLE 1. General Provisions [14900 - 14902]
  ( Article 1 added by Stats. 1992, Ch. 959, Sec. 1. )

14900.
  

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the San Joaquin Valley Drainage Relief Act.

(Added by Stats. 1992, Ch. 959, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1993. Section operative July 1, 1993, pursuant to Section 14920.)

14901.
  

The Legislature finds and declares as follows:

(a) A report on the San Joaquin Valley Drainage Program entitled, “A Management Plan for Agricultural Subsurface Drainage and Related Problems on the Westside San Joaquin Valley,” has identified 75,000 acres of irrigated agricultural lands that should be retired by the year 2040 primarily due to characteristics of low productivity, poor drainability, and high levels of selenium in shallow groundwater.

(b) Federal, state, and local water organizations and officials should consider the management plan and adopt those parts appropriate for their long-term strategy of contributing to the management or solution of the drainage problems of the west side of the San Joaquin Valley.

(c) The United States Department of the Interior and the State of California should jointly develop a technical assistance program to ameliorate the drainage problems.

(d) The people of the state are concerned with the continued leaching of harmful elements from these lands.

(e) Continued irrigation of these lands could create significant drainage and environmental problems.

(f) Implementing solutions to the drainage and environmental problems associated with these lands will be very costly.

(g) The department is responsible for water planning and development activities throughout the state, has participated in the development of the plan for the management of subsurface drainage problems, and shall take an active leadership role in implementing the plan, including the land retirement element of the plan.

(h) Local agencies have decisionmaking authority, and are subject to court judgments, and statutory and contractual obligations, relating to water use and distribution. The department shall coordinate its activities under this chapter with those local agencies.

(i) The federal government has ongoing statutory and contractual obligations to provide drainage service to the lands within the San Luis Unit of the Central Valley Project. The department shall recognize those obligations and shall coordinate land retirement activities with appropriate federal agencies.

(j) The Department of Fish and Game is responsible for the stewardship of the state’s fish and wildlife resources and the habitat on which they depend, and can offer its considerable expertise to the department on matters relating to the management of lands in accordance with this chapter and shall be consulted concerning the management of the lands acquired pursuant to this chapter and managed as fish and wildlife habitat.

(k) The Department of Conservation is responsible for administering programs to conserve the state’s agricultural lands and has information on the state’s soil and farmlands and shall be consulted for the purpose of identifying agricultural lands that may be acquired pursuant to this chapter.

(Added by Stats. 1992, Ch. 959, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1993. Section operative July 1, 1993, pursuant to Section 14920.)

14901.5.
  

(a) It is the intent of the Legislature that the initial funding for the administrative costs of the San Joaquin Valley Drainage Relief Program be appropriated by the Legislature for the 1993–94 fiscal year from the water quality program component of the Environmental Water Fund.

(b) It is the further intent of the Legislature that, upon full implementation of the program, the program shall become self-supporting.

(Added by Stats. 1992, Ch. 959, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1993. Section operative July 1, 1993, pursuant to Section 14920.)

14902.
  

Unless the context otherwise requires, the terms used in this chapter have the following meanings:

(a) “Fund” means the San Joaquin Valley Drainage Relief Fund.

(b) “Management plan” or “plan” means the management plan for agricultural subsurface drainage and related problems as described in the final report of the San Joaquin Valley Drainage Program, dated September 1990, described in subdivision (a) of Section 14901.

(c) “Program” means the San Joaquin Valley Drainage Relief Program.

(d) “Retirement land” means the lands recommended for retirement in the management plan, other irrigated agricultural lands characterized by low productivity, poor drainability, and high levels of dissolved selenium in shallow groundwater, or lands that contribute to agricultural subsurface drainage problems.

(Added by Stats. 1992, Ch. 959, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1993. Section operative July 1, 1993, pursuant to Section 14920.)

WATWater Code - WAT1.