Thursday, December 27, 2012

Siskiyou Superior Court Rules that the Act of Diverting Water is Not Subject to Regulation Under California Fish and Game Code section 1602

On December 24, 2012, the Siskiyou Superior Court issued its decision in Siskiyou County Farm Bureau v. California Department of Fish and Game, Case No. SC SC CV 11-00418.  In the decision, the court finds that the Legislature did not intend to include the act of diverting water pursuant to a water right to be within the regulatory scope of Water Code section 1602, and enjoins the California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) from seeking to enforce against agricultural water diverters for failing to notify the Department of the diverter’s intention to exercise his water right absent alteration to the bed, bank, or stream.

A copy of the court’s decision is available here.

For additional information regarding this post, please contact Rebecca R. Akroyd or the KMTG attorney with whom you normally consult.

DWR Increases 2013 State Water Project Allocation to 40 Percent

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR), which had previously announced an initial State Water Project (SWP) contract allocation of 30 percent on November 29, 2012, increased that allocation on December 21, 2012 to 40 percent.

Early season storms have been identified as responsible for the increase in DWR’s water delivery estimate. These early season storms have replenished reservoirs and deepened the mountain snow pack. 

Lake Oroville and Shasta Lake, the State Water Project’s and federal Central Valley Project’s principal storage reservoirs, respectively, are each measuring over 100 percent of normal for the date.  Additionally, the mountain snowpack held 93 percent of average water content for the date. 

The SWP allocation is expected to further increase as more winter storms roll in.

A copy of DWR's official notice to SWP contractors can be found by clicking here.

For additional information regarding this post, please contact Rebecca R. Akroyd or the KMTG attorney with whom you normally consult.

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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Reminder: KMTG Will Host Presentation By Delta Watermaster This Friday

On Friday, December 14, from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. (pacific time), Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard (KMTG) will be hosting a brown-bag lunch MCLE event, entitled "What is the Delta Watermaster's Role in Addressing California's Water Issues? Learn the Answers from the Delta Watermaster Himself, Craig Wilson."

In 2009, the California State Legislature passed major water reform legislation. Among other things, that legislation created the position of Delta Watermaster. The Legislature's intent in creating the Delta Watermaster is hotly debated. Some say it was to crack down on allegedly illegal water diversions in the Delta. Others say the position’s focus on Delta water diversions simply distracts attention from other causes of decline in the Delta ecosystem. The purpose of this program is to hear from the Delta Watermaster, Craig Wilson, about the activities undertaken in the two-plus years since the position was created and about planned future activities. These activities range from compliance and enforcement actions, investigations of water use, and preparation of policy level reports on key water issues.

The event is sponsored by the Environmental Law Section and Natural Resources Subsection of the Real Propery Section of the California State Bar.  The event may be attended at the KMTG Sacramento office or by webinar.  Attendees are eligible for 1.0 MCLE credit.  The event will be moderated by Rebecca Akroyd of KMTG.

To register for the webinar, please visit the State Bar's website.

To attend in-person, at the KMTG Sacramento Office (400 Capitol Mall, 27th Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814), please e-mail Lindsey Ono at

For additional information regarding this event, please contact Lindsey Ono or Rebecca Akroyd.