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E-Newsletter: New Website, Leadership Changes & More

February 11, 2016
E-Newsletter: New Website, Leadership Changes & More
February 11, 2016

Southern California Water Committee Announces New Leadership, Rich Atwater Retirement 
Board Elects Riverside County Supervisor Marion Ashley as Chair, Charles Wilson as Executive Director

SCWC recently announced that Rich Atwater will be retiring as the organization’s executive director in April of this year after 5 years of dedicated service. In addition, SCWC announced that Charles Wilson, formerly with Southern California Edison and immediate past-chair of SCWC, has been selected by the Board of Trustees to serve as the organization’s new executive director, following Atwater’s retirement on April 1, 2016.

SCWC Vice Chairman and Supervisor for Riverside County’s Fifth District Marion Ashley will take on a new role as the organization’s Chairman.

“As a civic leader committed to sustaining Southern California’s water supply, Supervisor Ashley embodies our organization’s mission, and I’m pleased to welcome him as our new chair,” said Stacy Roscoe, chair of SCWC’s Strategic Planning Task Force. “We’re grateful for Marion’s leadership and look forward to a productive and successful 2016.”

Click here to continue reading SCWC’s press release.

 ICYMI: State Announces Increase of State Water Project Allocation

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) recently announced an increase in allocations from 10 percent to 15 percent for water agencies who receive water from the State Water Project. Water agencies that receive water from the State Water Project provide water to 26 million people, businesses and farms throughout the state.

DWR Director Mark Cowin commented on the increase, stating:

“Our modest increase underscores the fact that we still have a critical water shortage after four-plus years of drought that we don’t know when will end. One look at our low reservoirs tells us that we need a lot more wet weather before summer.”

For more on the allocation increase, read DWR’s press release. 

Water Deeply Op-Ed: With Smelt It’s ‘Groundhog Day’ in the Delta

In the Water Deeply op-ed, “With Smelt It’s ‘Groundhog Day’ in the Delta,” Tom Philp compares the smelt situation in the Delta to the Hollywood’s 1993 version of “Groundhog Day” and discusses the need for California WaterFix to modernize this water system and start capturing water north of smelt territory. Below are exceprts from the op-ed:

 “The first big storm can stir up turbidity in the Delta, providing cover for the smelt to move about with the tides, and raising concern that a population will head toward the pumps. This creates a cruel paradox: when the flows of fresh water can be at their highest, pumping levels can be at their lowest…

“Will the Delta’s version of Groundhog Day ever end? Maybe so. California WaterFix proposes to build three new intakes in the northern Delta. They are miles away from the smelt migration zone. The idea is to take a safe “Big Gulp” of water when Nature makes it available, such as right now. That, presumably, would solve the smelt problem.”

To read the Water Deeply op-ed in full, click here.

SCWC January Quarterly Meeting & Luncheon Recap

Thanks to all who came out to SCWC’s January Quarterly Luncheon sponsored and hosted by the Western Municipal Water District. The event was a great success, where regional and local leaders met to discuss Southern California’s water future.

The event featured a panel discussion with John Rossi, General Manager of Western Municipal Water District; Brandon Goshi, Manager of Water Resources Planning, MWD; and Shane Chapman, General Manager of Upper San Gabriel Valley MWD. The panel focused on regional strategies to drought proof Southern California through increasing local supplies. We would like to extend our thanks to the panelists for joining our event.

Special thanks to additional sponsors: Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District, Best Best & Krieger, Krieger & Stewart and San Bernardino Municipal Water District!

To learn about upcoming events, click here.

Desert Water Agency’s General Manager Dave Luker Retires

Longtime Desert Water Agency (DWA) General Manager-Chief Engineer Dave Luker has retired after 23 years of service. Below is an excerpt from the Desert Sun op-ed, “Retiring Dave Luker gave valley his all,” by Jim Barrett, general manager of the Coachella Valley Water District, discussing Luker’s contributions and achievements.

“The programs and policies that Luker has brought to our region will help sustain our resources into the future, ensuring that we can continue serving the Coachella Valley with a safe, affordable and reliable water supply for generations to come. His agency, the statewide water industry and our valley community have changed for the better because of Luker’s dedication to his career.”

Continue reading the Desert Sun op-ed here. 

Register Today for Urban Water Institute’s Spring Water Conference 

The conference features a diverse group of water experts, including John Laird with California Natural Resources, Assemblymember Anthony Rendon, and more. SCWC’s Charley Wilson is also participating the event and giving the opening remarks on Thursday, February 11.  

Event Details
WHEN: Wednesday, February 10 to Friday, February 12
WHERE: Hilton Palm Springs Hotel
400 East Tahquitz Canyon Way, Palm Spring, CA 92262
To register for the event, click here. 

Lawn Dude’s Conservation Column 

Hello water peeps, Lawn Dude here. As you read previously, SCWC’s website had a makeover, and I think it’s rather important to highlight one of the coolest new features: Lawn Dude’s Conservation Column! You heard it here first, my column is about to go viral on the worldwide web. Now, you’ll have access to all my tips – free of charge – right on SCWC’s homepage.

P.S. How cute did the graphic designers make my icon look? #Blushing

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