WatchSonoma Watch

Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approves groundwater study


Sonoma County supervisors Tuesday formally approved preparation of a plan for more thorough management and study of groundwater in the Santa Rosa Plain.

The 85-square mile area, stretching from Cotati to Windsor, has a 260-square-mile watershed, including surrounding uplands. The plan, which fulfills a state mandate, would outline a strategy to conserve groundwater supplies and increase use of recycled water in the region, among other goals.

Tuesday’s unanimous vote capped a two-year effort to drum up support for the work among the region’s governments, property owners and business, agriculture and environmental groups.

Representatives from those interests make up a 30-member panel that is overseeing the work. It includes a representative from the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, whose planned Rohnert Park casino has drawn fire from opponents and neighbors concerned about its impact on groundwater and private wells.

Supervisors have lamented their limited say in the casino’s approval and design, but did seem to welcome the tribe’s participation in the groundwater work.

The plan for the Santa Rosa Plain will be modeled on a non-regulatory approach to groundwater management now underway in the southern Sonoma Valley.

A draft plan is expected late next year.

Funding sources include $250,000 in grants from the state Department of Water Resources and a total of $260,000 provided by the county Water Agency, the county, the cities of Santa Rosa, Cotati, Rohnert Park, Sebastopol and Windsor, and the California American Water Co.

3 Responses to “Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approves groundwater study”

  1. GAJ says:

    If you have a well…they’re coming to get you!

    The average water bill is closing in on $150/month and, by decree, those with wells will eventually reach that mark, you can bet on it.

    Either they’ll put a meter on your well or charge you an annual flat fee.

  2. Steveguy says:

    They will want to put a meter on your well, and charge you for the water.

  3. Frank says:


    Lake Mendocino and Lake Sonoma in the Russian River have been listed under Section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act for mercury pollution measured in fish tissue. Mercury, also called quicksilver, is a heavy metal and potent neurotoxin that is harmful to humans and wildlife. Mercury builds up in the bodies of fish and also in people who eat contaminated fish. Possible mercury sources include mercury and gold mines, soil erosion due to human activities such as logging and road construction, and airborne sources from North America and Asia.
    I wonder what SWRCB will do with the Natural organic Mercury in the ground that mining had nothing to with but gets blamed for, oh wait the mercury was there before the mine. listed in the table of Elements as Hg
    he who has the water makes the rules