Code Section Group

Water Code - WAT


  ( Division 18 added by Stats. 1955, Ch. 1514. )

PART 4. POWERS [60220 - 60232]

  ( Part 4 added by Stats. 1955, Ch. 1514. )

CHAPTER 2. Powers [60230 - 60232]
  ( Chapter 2 added by Stats. 1955, Ch. 1514. )


For the purposes of replenishing the groundwater supplies within the district, a district shall have power:

(a) To have perpetual succession.

(b) To sue and be sued, except as otherwise provided in this division or by law, in all actions and proceedings in all courts and tribunals.

(c) To adopt a seal and alter it at pleasure.

(d) To take by grant, purchase, gift, devise, or lease, to hold, use and enjoy, and to lease, convey or dispose of, real and personal property of every kind, within or without the district, necessary or convenient to the full exercise of its power.

(e) Within or outside of the district to construct, purchase, lease, or otherwise acquire, and to operate and maintain necessary waterworks and other works, machinery and facilities, canals, conduits, waters, water rights, spreading grounds, lands, rights and privileges useful or necessary to replenish the underground water basin within the district, or to augment the common water supplies of the district, including, but not limited to, the exercise of any power under Section 60224.

(f) For the common benefit of the district, to store water in underground water basins or reservoirs within or outside of the district, to appropriate and acquire water and water rights within or outside of the district, to import water into the district, and to conserve water within or outside of the district.

(g) To carry out the purposes of this division, to commence, maintain, intervene in, defend and compromise, in the name of the district, or otherwise, and to assume the costs and expenses of any and all actions and proceedings now or hereafter begun to determine or adjudicate all or a portion of the rights to divert, extract, or use waters within the district, or within any segments thereof or subbasins therein, as between owners of or claimants to those rights, to prevent any interference with water or water rights used or useful to the lands, inhabitants, owners, operators, or producers within the district, or to prevent the diminution of the quantity or quality of the water supply of the district, or to prevent unlawful exportation of water from the district.

(h) To exercise the right of eminent domain to take any property necessary to supply the district or any portion thereof with replenishment water, including, but not limited to, the exercise of any power under Section 60224, except that the right of eminent domain may not be exercised with respect to (1) water and water rights already devoted to beneficial use, and (2) property (other than water and water rights) already appropriated to public use unless the taking be for a more necessary public use than that to which the property is already appropriated; provided that the district in exercising that power shall in addition to the damage for taking, injuring, or destruction of property also pay the cost of removal, reconstruction, or relocation of any structure, including, but not limited to, railways, mains, pipes, conduits, wires, cables, towers, or poles of any public utility which is required to be removed to a new location. No use by a district of property owned, at the time the action to condemn is brought, by an existing agency having powers to provide for the replenishment of groundwater, shall constitute a more necessary public use than the use to which the property is already appropriated.

A district shall not exercise the right of eminent domain to acquire property outside the boundaries of the principal county in which the district is situated unless it first obtains the consent thereto of the board of supervisors of the county in which the property is located.

(i) To act jointly with or cooperate with the United States or any agency thereof, and cooperate and act jointly with the state, or any county or agency thereof, or any political subdivision or district therein, including flood control districts, public and private corporations, and any person, to the end that the purposes and activities of the district may be fully and economically performed.

(j) To cause assessments and charges to be levied as provided in this division to accomplish the purposes of this division and to maintain such reserve funds for the future purchase of water for replenishment purposes as may be authorized to be levied.

(k) To make contracts, employ labor, and do all acts necessary for the full exercise of the foregoing powers.

(l) To carry on technical and other investigations of all kinds, necessary to carry out the provisions of this division, and for this purpose the district shall have the right of access through its authorized representative to all properties within the district.

(m) To borrow money and incur indebtedness and to issue bonds or other evidences of that indebtedness; to refund or retire any indebtedness or lien that may exist against the district or property thereof; to issue warrants to pay the formation expenses of the district, which may bear interest at a rate not exceeding 6 percent a year from the date of issue until funds are available to pay the warrants, and which formation expenses may include fees of attorneys and others employed to conduct the formation proceedings, but shall not include the expenses of holding and conducting the formation election.

(n) To cause taxes to be levied, in the manner provided in this division, for the purpose of paying any obligation of the district, including its formation expenses and any warrants issued therefor.

(o) To fix the rates at which water shall be sold for replenishment purposes, and to establish different rates for different classes of service or conditions of service, provided the rates shall be uniform for like classes and conditions of service.

(p) To fix the terms and conditions of any contract under which producers may agree voluntarily to use replenishment water from a nontributary source in lieu of groundwater, and to that end a district may become a party to the contract and pay from district funds that portion of the cost of the replenishment waters as will encourage the purchase and use of that water in lieu of pumping so long as the persons or property within the district are directly or indirectly benefited by the resulting replenishment.

(Amended by Stats. 1990, Ch. 389, Sec. 5.)


All expenditures for construction work, materials, equipment and supplies, and professional services, including, but not limited to, legal, legislative, public affairs, public relations, and engineering services, regardless of price shall be made pursuant to contract. All district contracts shall be in writing in a form prescribed by the general manager and approved by the general counsel. At minimum, each contract shall include the relevant scope of work, duration, and terms of payment.

(Added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 894, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2001.)


(a) The powers and duties herein enumerated, except as otherwise expressly provided, shall be exercised and performed by the board of the district. If an existing agency has facilities available and adequate to accomplish any part of the purposes of a district created under this act, the district shall investigate and determine the cost of contracting for the accomplishment of that purpose through that existing agency. Thereupon, the board shall make a finding , by resolution and supported by evidence, whether or not the purpose proposed to be accomplished by the district can be achieved more economically and for the best interests of the area to be benefited by entering into such a contract with an existing agency. If the board finds that such contract is more economical and for the best interests of the area to be benefited, it shall so contract for the accomplishment of said purpose, if such agency so agrees. The purpose of this section is to avoid duplication of similar operations by existing agencies and replenishment districts.

(b) Prior to constructing, leasing, purchasing, or contracting for a capital improvement project, a district shall determine the feasibility of such a project by ordering or preparing and reviewing a cost-benefit analysis based upon reasonable assumptions.

(Amended by Stats. 2000, Ch. 894, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2001.)


Each district has the power generally to perform all acts necessary to carry out fully the provisions of this act.

(Added by Stats. 1955, Ch. 1514.)

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