Today, let me tell you about an opportunity to help “scope out” the water future of the Pajaro Valley. As I hope listeners know (and they do know this, if they have been paying attention to the Land Use Report), the Pajaro Valley gets its water from a groundwater basin that is in critical overdraft. Not only is the water level in the groundwater basin dropping every year, salt water is now pouring into the basin, which is below sea level at the coast, thus contaminating the fresh water that remains in the basin. Something needed to be done fifty years ago. Something still needs to be done!
The Pajaro Valley Water Management Agency has prepared a new Basin Management Plan, to address this critical issue, and is now preparing a Subsequent Program Environmental Impact Report. You can get links to more information at kusp.org/landuse.
Two scoping meetings will be held at on Wednesday, February 27 at the Community Room at the City of Watsonville Civic Plaza. One meeting will be held from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. A second meeting will be held from 5:30 to 6:30. These meetings will focus on how the environmental process will go forward. A written comment period will close at 5:00 p.m. on March 11.
The stakes couldn’t be higher for the future of the Pajaro Valley, including areas in both Santa Cruz and Monterey Counties. I encourage your involvement!