NID adopts drought plan, calls for 20 percent conservation |

NID adopts drought plan, calls for 20 percent conservation

Directors of the Nevada Irrigation District on Wednesday adopted a series of drought measures that include limits on outdoor watering and a call for continued 20 percent reductions in water use by all district customers.

In a presentation to the NID Board of Directors, Water Operations Manager Chip Close recommended a package of conservation measures designed to meet requirements adopted March 17 by the State Water Board and to ensure that NID has adequate carryover water storage going into next year in case the drought continues into a fifth year.

Drought measures in effect for users of piped, treated water include outdoor watering no more than three days per week, with no watering during the heat of the day (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.); no watering until 48 hours after a rain, no water use that creates unnecessary runoff, and the use of shutoff nozzle on hoses.

NID and other water purveyors are being required to provide the State Water Board with monthly reports on water use, conservation compliance and enforcement efforts.

In a water supply update, Water Resources Superintendent Sue Sindt said this year’s water outlook is slightly worse than last year. She said the mountain snowpack is only about 6 percent of average water content for this time of year and that seasonal runoff is anticipated to be only 20-25 percent of average.

Officials credited district customers with reducing water use by an overall 16.4 percent during the 2014 drought and said an equal level or more will be needed to get through this year.

Close said continued conservation, tight measurement and controls on the canal system, and the purchase of an available 20,000- to 25,000-acre feet of additional water from the Pacific Gas and Electric Company will help meet the district’s water supply needs for this year and next.

Grass Valley firm wins $3M contract

Directors of the Nevada Irrigation District awarded a $2,974,580 contract to Hansen Brothers Enterprises Inc. of Grass Valley for construction of the Rock Creek Siphon Project in the North Auburn area.

The project, planned in collaboration with the Pacific Gas and Electric Company and Placer County Water Agency, will provide an emergency backup water supply for wide areas of Placer County. Its planning began after Rock Creek Reservoir’s primary water source, PG&E’s Bear River Canal, failed in 2011, causing lengthy water outages in the area.

The project includes nearly 3,600 feet of 36-inch pipeline from NID’s Combie-Ophir II Canal to PG&E’s Rock Creek Reservoir, located east of Highway 49 and north of Bell Road. Ultimately, water from NID’s Combie Reservoir will be able to flow to Rock Creek Reservoir where it can be routed to NID and PCWA water users in Placer County.

NID is funding its share of the project through a $1.6 million drought assistance grant from the State Department of Water Resources.

In other business, NID directors:

— awarded a $330,760 contract to the engineering and design firm AECOM for geotechnical and feasibility studies for a potential new reservoir between Rollins and Combie reservoirs on the Bear River. The studies are expected to take four months.

— approved a conveyance agreement with Willow Creek Center, LLC, for water service to three commercial parcels off Highway 49 near the Home Depot property in North Auburn. In addition to providing water service, the new water system is expected to improve fire flows for the area.

The next regular meeting of the NID Board of Directors will be held at 9 a.m. on April 8, at the NID Business Center in Grass Valley.

NID board meetings are open to the public.

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