How We Were Formed

The District was formed in 1985, after about twenty years of struggle, in recognition that if the overdraft was allowed to continue unabated there could come a time when pumping groundwater for irrigation would no longer be economic, or the quality of water pumped would not be satisfactory for irrigation. The District was formed, by the election of landowners within the District, under California Law, as a legal body to address water needs of the area. The District is governed by a five person Board of Directors elected to serve alternating four year terms.

In 1997 the District constructed a Pilot Recharge Basin near Monte Vista Avenue and very successfully operated it during the irrigation seasons of 1998, 1999 and 2000.

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Irrigation Master Plan

In the late 1980’s the District retained the services of Boyle Engineering Corp. to conduct studies and make recommendations. An Irrigation Water Master Plan was completed in 1990. In 1994, the District completed a Groundwater Management Plan under California Assembly Bill 3030. The Plan identifies nineteen tasks to: monitor groundwater levels and quality, reduce pumping through improved conservation and further development of surface water/groundwater conjunctive use programs, and search for water supplies and methods to recharge the groundwater. In years 1995 through 1998 the District developed and funded an incentive program to encourage irrigators to use available wet year water from the Turlock and Merced Irrigation Districts.

Working Together

The District has joined other agencies who pump water from the common Turlock Groundwater Basin in developing and adopting a Basin-wide Groundwater Management Plan with the objective of coordination and joint efforts to stabilize groundwater levels.