More Water Possible for TID Growers

David Fransen

Despite an exceptionally dry winter, even more water could be made available to Turlock Irrigation District customers.

A measure on the TID Board of Directors' Tuesday agenda would make an additional 15,000 acre-feet of irrigation water available to TID growers. The water would be sold at a $20 per acre-foot cost, to be used only on parcels within the TID boundary.

Should Directors approve the measure, it would be the third time this season additional water has been made available. The initial 30-inch cap was raised to 34 acre-inches in a 3-2 vote on May 14, despite concerns that the additional water could reduce the district's ability to provide water in the coming years. On June 11, the district agreed to purchase up to 7,000 acre-feet of water from the Modesto Irrigation District, to be made available to growers at a cost of $100 per acre-foot.

But TID staff says that more water has flowed into Don Pedro than expected, allowing the district to make the extra water available.

“(The) current forecast of hydrologic conditions indicate(s) that there will be more water in Don Pedro reservoir than was anticipated during the May 14, 2013 forecast,” a staff report reads. “As a result, staff has determined that some additional water can be made available to TID irrigation customers.”

The additional water would be made available independent of growers' current 34 acre-inch cap. Details on the water sale process are still being drafted, though all costs would be paid in full when growers sign up for the water.

On Tuesday, the Turlock Irrigation District Board of Directors is also expected to:
• Hear regular weekly updates on electrical service, power generation, water availability, and the status of the irrigation season.
• Continue the process to form a new improvement district, the Maciel-Petersen Pump, comprising 85.64 acres near Hilmar.
• Issue $65,295.19 in registered warrants to pay for the creation of the Pelliccia Pump No. 2 improvement district.
• Declare some property as excess, and authorize its sale.
• Discuss a case of anticipated litigation in closed session.

The TID Board of Directors will meet at 9 a.m. Tuesday in the Board Room of the TID Main Office Building, 333 E. Canal Dr.

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