Code Section Group

Water Code - WAT


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


  ( Part 6 added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 196. )

CHAPTER 4.7. Water Conservation Bond Law of 1988 [12879 - 12879.17]

  ( Chapter 4.7 added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 46, Sec. 1. )

ARTICLE 1. General Provisions [12879 - 12879.2]
  ( Article 1 added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 46, Sec. 1. )


This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the Water Conservation Bond Law of 1988.

(Added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 46, Sec. 1. Approved in Proposition 82 at the November 8, 1988, election.)


The Legislature finds and declares as follows:

(a) There is a lack of local water projects in certain areas of the state where the demands of a growing population could exceed water supplies which could threaten the public health and impede economic and social growth.

(b) It is in the interest of the state to provide financial assistance to local agencies for the development of local water resources necessary to meet requirements for domestic, agricultural, and other uses.

(c) The participation of the state and the State Water Resources Development System in the construction and operation of local water projects in those areas is desirable to further the development, control, and conservation of the water resources of the state.

(d) Voluntary, cost-effective capital outlay water conservation programs can help meet growing demand for clean and abundant water supplies.

(e) Recharging groundwater basins is an effective way to maximize the availability of scarce water supplies throughout the state through the efficient management of recharge and extraction activities in groundwater basins, and by reversing the effects of historical overdraft.

(Added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 46, Sec. 1. Approved in Proposition 82 at the November 8, 1988, election.)


As used in this chapter, the following terms have the following meanings:

(a) “Committee” means the Water Conservation Finance Committee created pursuant to Section 12879.9.

(b) “Department” means the Department of Water Resources.

(c) “Fund” means the 1988 Water Conservation Fund created pursuant to Section 12879.3.

(d) “Local agency” means any city, county, city and county, district, joint powers authority, or other political subdivision of the state involved in water management.

(e) “Eligible project” means any dam, reservoir, or other construction or improvement by a local agency for the diversion, storage, or primary distribution of water, or facilities for groundwater extraction, primarily for domestic, municipal, agricultural, industrial, recreation, fish and wildlife enhancement, flood control, or power production purposes. “Eligible project” also means any reservoir, pipeline, or other construction or improvement by a local agency for the storage or distribution of reclaimed water for reuse.

(f) (1) “Groundwater recharge facilities” means land and facilities for artificial groundwater recharge through methods that include, but are not limited to, either percolation using basins, pits, ditches, and furrows, modified streambed, flooding, and well injection, or in-lieu recharge. “Groundwater recharge facilities” also means capital outlay expenditures to expand, renovate, or restructure land and facilities already in use for the purpose of groundwater recharge.

(2) Groundwater recharge facilities may include either of the following:

(A) Instream facilities for regulation of water levels, but not regulation of streamflow by storage to accomplish diversion from the waterway.

(B) Conveyance facilities to the recharge site, including devices for flow regulation and measurement of recharge waters.

(3) Any part or all of the project facilities, including land under the facilities, may consist of separable features, or an appropriate share of multipurpose features of a larger system, or both.

(g) “In-lieu recharge” means accomplishing increased storage of groundwater by providing surface water to a user who relies on groundwater as a primary supply, in order to accomplish groundwater storage through the direct use of that surface water in lieu of pumping groundwater. In-lieu recharge shall be used rather than continuing pumping while artificially recharging with surface waters. However, bond proceeds shall not be used to purchase surface waters for use in lieu of pumping groundwater.

(h) “Voluntary cost-effective capital outlay water conservation programs” means those feasible capital outlay measures to improve the efficiency of water use through benefits that exceed their costs. The programs include, but are not limited to, lining or piping of ditches; improvements in water distribution system controls such as automated canal control, construction of small reservoirs within distribution systems that conserve water that already has been captured for reuse, and related physical improvements; tailwater pumpback recovery systems to reduce leakage; and capital changes in on-farm irrigation systems that improve irrigation efficiency, such as sprinkler or subsurface drip systems. In each case, the department shall determine that there is a net savings of water as a result of each proposed project and that the project is cost-effective.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 538, Sec. 673. Effective January 1, 2007. Note: This section, as proposed to be added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 46, was amended by Stats. 1988, Ch. 297, and approved (in amended form) in Prop. 82 on Nov. 8, 1988.)

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