DWR awards $28 million in ag and urban water use grants

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) is awarding $28 million in Proposition 50 grants to 75 agricultural and urban water use efficiency projects.

DWR issued a Proposal Solicitation Package in November, 2004, and received 174 applications by the application deadline. The proposals were evaluated in the areas of science and economics before further examination, scoring, and ranking by technical review panels. Draft funding recommendations were then posted on DWR's Web site for public review.

Following a public workshop on June 1, 2005, the California Bay-Delta Authority endorsed the Department's recommendations and DWR Director Lester A. Snow approved the final funding recommendations on June 10.

Local agencies, water districts, academic and research institutions, non-profit organizations and others will use the funds for implementation, pilot and demonstration projects, research and development, feasibility studies, technical assistance and education to increase water supply reliability, improve water quality and in-stream flow in the state.

Funding for the projects is available through Proposition 50, the Water Security, Clean Drinking Water, Coastal and Beach Protection Act of 2002. Proposition 50 provides grants for agricultural, urban water conservation and recycling through Water Code Chapter 7, Section 79550(g).

DWR staff will contact each agency and start the contracting process by the end of June, 2005.

The list of the projects approved for funding and other related information is posted at http://www.owue.water.ca.gov/finance/index.cfm.

This article originally appeared in the 06/01/2005 issue of Environmental Protection.

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