Clean Water for Davis & Woodland

On July 29, I was honored to speak at the dedication ceremony of the Woodland-Davis Clean Water Agency's Regional Water Treatment Facility -- the culmination of over 20 years of work! I am proud to be a part of the team who made this happen!

One of the most critical matters facing our region has been the long-term provision of safe, reliable water for municipal use. A safe, diverse, reliable water supply is critical for public health, economic viability and vitality of our communities, protection of environmental resources, and the health of our agriculture industry.

Over two decades ago, our predecessors determined that the best way to secure long-term water supply and quality was to obtain surface water from the Sacramento River for conjunctive use with our groundwater wells. We believed it was our generation’s responsibility to complete this project to create a secure water future for our two communities.

Despite some skepticism, we pressed forward.

In the early 1990s, visionary water stewards in Yolo County applied for water right permits to serve the needs of the Cities. In 2004, Woodland, Davis and UC Davis entered into an agreement to study a joint water supply. In 2007, this specific project was identified as the environmentally superior alternative. In 2009, we formed a JPA to finance and build the project.

From the outset it was a cooperative pursuit, influenced by many outstanding leaders from both communities. I’d like to recognize former and current Board members in appreciation for their unwavering commitment to the planning and implementation of this project:

  • Bill Marble, founding member

  • Stephen Souza, founding member

  • Martie Dote, founding member

  • Sid England, UC Davis

  • Skip Davies, City of Woodland

  • Brett Lee, City of Davis

  • Jim Hilliard, City of Woodland

  • Dan Wolk, City of Davis

Under our governance, the Agency achieved many significant achievements, most notably:

  • Acquisition of water right (45,000 acre feet)

  • Purchase of water right from Conaway Ranch for additional 10,000 acre feet

  • A partnership with RD 2035 for the joint construction and operation of a water intake structure

  • Adoption of water rates by both cities to support the project

  • Securing federal and state grant funding for the Joint Intake and securing low interest SRF financing for the overall regional surface water system

  • Selecting the Design-Build-Operate method of project delivery

The dedication of this facility is one of the final steps on a long journey. I am proud that together we have secured a source of clean drinking water for future generations of folks in Yolo County.