After a two-week break to revamp the modifications to a conservation program that has ballooned from $40M to $100M with no end in sight, MWD staff now recommends that the program be funded at $450M, more than 10 times the original biennial budget for FYs 2015 and 2016, and only enough through fall 2015.
Monies from this unprecedented, unbudgeted program will come from reserves resulting from MWD’s over-collections. Although it may not have an immediate impact on rates, at this level of funding, MWD will exhaust all of its water management reserves, leaving no funding to purchase additional water transfer supplies, should the drought continue in 2016, or to purchase water to refill its depleted storage, should water supplies become available.
Rate increases to pay for the unprecedented expansion of this program are inevitable. MWD General Manager Kightligher said every $100M in MWD expenditures represents a 7 percent rate increase. MWD needs a complete overhaul of its turf replacement program. Join us to express your concern at the MWD board.
Link to Water Authority 5/25 letter on 5-1 Conservation Funding: