Sonoma County Water Agency E-News | April 2017
New Wastewater Treatment Tours
The Sonoma County Water Agency invites the public to attend free tours of the Russian River and Sonoma Valley Treatment Plants. To sign up for the tours described below, please fill out the online registration form at Additional details will follow shortly after your registration is received. 
Get an in-depth look at how your wastewater is cleaned and how this water is used once it is clean.

Sonoma Valley Wastewater Treatment Plant Tour: Saturday, April 22nd, 2017
  • 9:00 am – 10:00 am
  • 10:00 am – 11:00 am
  • 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Russian River Wastewater Treatment Plant tour: Saturday, April 29th, 2017
  • 9:00 am – 10:00 am
  • 10:00 am – 11:00 am
  • 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Questions? For more information about tours, please contact Sophie Hallam-Eames, Programs Specialist, at (707) 524-6430 or  
Occidental County Sanitation District Update: Spring 2017
For more than 20 years, the Occidental County Sanitation District has been looking for a solution to its wastewater problem. Over the years, the District has studied alternatives that range from working with Camp Meeker on a small regional system to upgrading its plant and piping the water to farmers for irrigation. None of the approximately 15 options considered have been feasible – due to either costs, environmental concerns or community opposition.

Time is now running short:  The District is under orders by the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board to stop the current practice of discharging recycled water into a pond at the headwaters of Dutch Bill Creek by January 2018. Last year, the District determined that trucking Occidental’s wastewater to another sanitation district is the most cost effective solution.

A recent environmental document analyzed trucking the wastewater to the Russian River County Sanitation District’s main lift station on Riverside Drive, with a back-up option of trucking to the Airport-Larkfield-Wikiup plant. At a public hearing held in Monte Rio in February, the Riverside Drive neighbors made clear their opposition to the project, with more than 20 people speaking out. In response to community concerns, Water Agency staff (working on behalf of the District), is pursuing other options and will be releasing a new environmental document in the next few months.
Santa Rosa approaches wettest year on record
During the rainiest year on record in Santa Rosa, 55.73” of rain fell. As of April 2nd, Santa Rosa has received 55.56” of rainfall, which is just 0.17” of rain away from breaking the all-time record. With months remaining in the water year, just a small amount of rainfall would push Santa Rosa past the all-time precipitation mark.

Water Supply as of March 27, 2017:
Lake Sonoma: 66.5% of total reservoir capacity, 103.5 of target water supply capacity

Lake Mendocino: 55.8% of total reservoir capacity, 104.2% of target water supply
Cumulative Rainfaill as of April 2, 2017: 
Ukiah:  48.11” which is 146.50% of average and 23.04” away from breaking record annual total rainfall (WY 1998: 71.15”)  

Santa Rosa: 55.56” which is 206.54% of average and 0.17” away from breaking record annual total rainfall (WY 1983: 55.73)

Proposed Water Transmission Budget Goes to Board for Approval

The Water Agency is proposing a wholesale water rate increase for its water transmission budget that would average $.90 per month, or $12 a year for the typical household in Santa Rosa.  The Water Agency’s Board of Directors on Tuesday, April 11th will review and consider for adoption the Fiscal Year 2017/18 Water Transmission Budget which funds the ongoing maintenance of more than 100 miles of underground pipelines and supporting facilities.  More than 600,000 residents rely on this underground pipeline system for their drinking water.  The budget also includes funding for environmental restoration efforts along the Russian River and Dry Creek, two major natural pipelines that help deliver water from Lake Sonoma to groundwater wells.  

Laguna de Santa Rosa Restoration Grant
The Sonoma County Water Agency (Water Agency) Board of Directors have adopted a resolution supporting the development of the Laguna-Mark West Creek Watershed Master Restoration Planning Project (project). Made possible by a $517,000 grant from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the project includes development of a comprehensive restoration plan for the Laguna-Mark West Creek watershed and early implementation plans for one or two high-priority projects identified in the restoration plan.
April Events Calendar
  • 4/4/2017
  • 4/11/2017
  • 4/25/2017
  • 4/28/2017

Public Tours: Wastewater Treatment

  • 4/22/2017
  • 4/29/2017

North Bay Watershed Association Board Meeting

  • 4/7/2017
Employment Opportunities
We invite you to explore the career opportunities available with the Sonoma County Water Agency.
Fact of the Month
Did you know 
Spring Lake is a man-made facility designed for flood protection and recreation and maintained by the Sonoma County Water Agency in partnership with Sonoma County Regional Parks.
This E-News is produced by the Water Agency's Community & Government Affairs Department.  We want to hear from you!  Contact us with your questions. 
Sonoma County Water Agency