Amended in Senate February 11, 2016

California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 938


Introduced by Assembly Memberbegin delete Salasend deletebegin insert Rodriguezend insert

February 26, 2015


An act to amend Section 10722.4 of the Water Code, relating to groundwater.

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

AB 938, as amended, begin deleteSalasend delete begin insertRodriguezend insert. Groundwater: basin reprioritization: establishment of groundwater sustainability agency.

Existing law requires the Department of Water Resources to identify the extent of monitoring of groundwater elevations that is being undertaken within each groundwater basin or subbasin and to prioritize basins or subbasins as high, medium, low, or very low priority and requires the initial priority for each basin to be established no later than January 31, 2015. Existing law, the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, requires all groundwater basins designated as high- or medium-priority basins by the department that are designated as basins subject to critical conditions of overdraft to be managed under a groundwater sustainability plan or coordinated groundwater sustainability plans by January 31, 2020, and requires all other groundwater basins designated as high- or medium-priority basins to be managed under a groundwater sustainability plan or coordinated groundwater sustainability plans by January 31, 2022, except as specified. The actbegin delete requiresend deletebegin insert requires, any time the department changes these basin priorities and elevates a basin to a medium- or high-priority basin after January 31, 2015,end insert a localbegin delete agency, any time the department changes these basin priorities and elevates a basin to a medium- or high-priority basin after January 31, 2015,end deletebegin insert agency or combination of local agencies overlying a groundwater basinend insert to either establish a groundwater sustainability agency within 2 years of reprioritization and adopt a groundwater sustainability plan within 5 years of reprioritization, or to submit an alternative to the department that the local agency believes satisfies the objectives of these provisions within 2 years of reprioritization.

This bill wouldbegin delete impose the requirement to establish a groundwater sustainability agency or submit an alternative after reprioritization on a local agency or combination of local agencies overlying a groundwater basin.end deletebegin insert make nonsubstantive changes to these groundwater basin provisions.end insert

Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: no. State-mandated local program: no.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

begin delete
P2    1

SECTION 1.  

Section 10722.4 of the Water Code is amended
2to read:

3

10722.4.  

(a) Pursuant to Section 10933, for the purposes of
4this part the department shall categorize each basin as one of the
5following priorities:

6(1) High priority.

7(2) Medium priority.

8(3) Low priority.

9(4) Very low priority.

10(b) The initial priority for each basin shall be established by the
11department pursuant to Section 10933 no later than January 31,
122015.

13(c) Any time the department updates Bulletin 118 boundaries
14pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 12924, the department shall
15reassess the prioritization pursuant to Section 10933.

16(d) Any time the department changes the basin priorities
17pursuant to Section 10933, if a basin is elevated to a medium- or
18high-priority basin after January 31, 2015, a local agency or
19combination of local agencies overlying a groundwater basin shall
20have two years from the date of reprioritization to either establish
21a groundwater sustainability agency pursuant to Chapter 4
22(commencing with Section 10723) and five years from the date of
23reprioritization to adopt a groundwater sustainability plan pursuant
P3    1to Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 10727) or two years to
2satisfy the requirements of Section 10733.6.

end delete
3begin insert

begin insertSECTION 1.end insert  

end insert

begin insertSection 10722.4 of the end insertbegin insertWater Codeend insertbegin insert is amended
4to read:end insert

5

10722.4.  

(a) Pursuant to Section 10933, forbegin delete theend delete purposes of
6thisbegin delete partend deletebegin insert part,end insert the department shall categorize each basin as one
7of the following priorities:

8(1) High priority.

9(2) Medium priority.

10(3) Low priority.

11(4) Very low priority.

12(b) The initial priority for each basin shall be established by the
13department pursuant to Section 10933 no later than January 31,
142015.

15(c) Any time the department updates Bulletin 118 boundaries
16pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 12924, the department shall
17reassess the prioritization pursuant to Section 10933.

18(d) If the department changes priorities pursuant to Section
1910933 to elevate a basin from a low- or very low priority basin to
20a medium- or high-priority basin after January 31, 2015, the agency
21formation and planning deadlines of this part shall be extended as
22follows:

23(1) A local agency, or combination of local agencies overlying
24a groundwater basin, shall have two years from the date of
25reprioritization to either establish a groundwater sustainability
26agency pursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 10723)
27or two years to satisfy the requirements of Section 10733.6.

28(2) A groundwater sustainability agency shall have five years
29from the date of reprioritization to meet the requirements of
30subdivision (a) of Section 10720.7, except that if the reprioritization
31occurs before January 31, 2017, a groundwater sustainability
32agency subject to paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section
3310720.7 shall have until January 31, 2022.



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