WATCH: Proposed District Consolidation Takes Step Forward

Stockton, CA (May 9, 2019) – The proposed consolidation between Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID) and the West Side Irrigation District (WSID) took an important step forward.

At its regular May 2019 meeting, the San Joaquin County Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) voted to allow the draft Municipal Service Review (MSR) and Sphere of Influence (SOI) report prepared for both districts to move forward in the public review process with a hearing to be scheduled on June 13.

Representatives from BBID addressed the Commission, whose vote was unanimous.

Watch the full proceedings below (video courtesy of San Joaquin County LAFCO).

WATCH: BBID, WSID District Overview & Infrastructure Tour

In advance of next week’s meeting before the San Joaquin County Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO), the Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID) released the following video, which will be presented to LAFCO.

The video provides a brief overview of BBID and West Side Irrigation District (WSID). BBID and WSID will present a report before the Commission, another step in the planned consolidation of the districts.

Farmers Face Water Shortfall Despite Dense Snowpack, Full Reservoirs

Byron, CA (April 17, 2019) – Today, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) announced a slight increase in the allocation for South-of-Delta Central Valley Project (CVP) contractors, to 65%. This comes at a time the state’s snowpack is so dense it’s been referred to as a “water supply dream,” and every reservoir used to supply South-of-Delta operations is above 100% of normal.

“Despite an overly abundant water supply,” said BBID GM Rick Gilmore, “this incremental increase is essentially a drop in the bucket. If we can’t even get close to a full, 100% supply this year – then when, if ever?”

“The snowpack surpassed 160% of normal in the northern and central Sierra Nevada,” Gilmore continued. “Meanwhile, reservoirs are in flood control operations. And yet, our growers and ranchers are still being forced to make do with less than their fair share.”

At the outset of the 2019 growing season, the uncertainty created by continually delayed allocation announcements makes it extremely difficult for farmers to plan their operations.

“Reclamation staff understands the challenges and difficulties these decisions create,” Gilmore said. “However, they are boxed in by the biological opinions in the overly-protective Endangered Species Act, which imposes significant restrictions on available water at a time there is more than enough to go around. To add insult to injury, the restrictions that have crippled CVP operations for so long have provided none of the intended benefits to fish species, which continue to decline despite the severe impacts the biological opinions are having on people. We also are concerned that SB1, newly-proposed legislation, may make this problem worse, not better.”

“Never has the problem – and solution – been clearer,” Gilmore said. “It is beyond argument that these runaway regulations must be reigned in. Until then, the CVP can’t fulfill its primary purpose: supplying water to those who supply much of the nation’s food.”

Growers Faced with Low Water Allocation Despite Plentiful Winter Storms

Byron, CA (February 20, 2019) – BBID General Manager Rick Gilmore issued the following statement, after the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) on Wednesday issued an initial 35% allocation for South-of-Delta Central Valley Project (CVP) contractors, including BBID:

“Reclamation’s initial allocation tells an all-too-familiar story. Despite above-average water supplies, CVP water deliveries are being restricted by outdated science and failed regulations, forcing growers to make do with less water.

This month, California has seen 18 trillion gallons of precipitation – enough to fill Lake Shasta 12 times. Our snowpack is well above normal. Runoff into many of the state’s main reservoirs this year is projected to be as much as 1.1 million-acre-feet higherthan at this time in 2012. Mother Nature is doing her part.

These overly conservative, low initial allocations unfairly burden the District’s growers and ranchers. They struggle to make informed planning decisions in the face of an uncertain water supply. BBID continues to work for constructive, collaborative reviews of existing regulations, and to ensure that the latest science is put to use for water allocations that impact BBID and the entire state.”

–Rick Gilmore, GM

BBID Invests in Building for the Future

Byron, CA (December 18, 2018) – At its regular board meeting Tuesday, the Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID) announced the District has issued $5 million in revenue bonds. The bonds will be used to fund significant capital improvement projects, securing the ongoing reliability of BBID’s water deliveries for years to come.

The District’s financial consultants delivered a presentation to the Board, describing the financial details laid out in the report below.

2018-10-31 Byron Bethany JT Powers Series 2018 Enterprise Rev Bonds Overview Report

BBID Supports Historic Agreement Between U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and California Department of Water Resources

FRESNO, CA – Today the United States Bureau of Reclamation and the California Department of Water Resources announced a series of agreements to resolve water conflicts that have vexed the State for decades and to reaffirm the collaborative partnership between the Federal and State governments to develop long-term solutions to California’s major water problems.

The Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID) joined other water agencies in supporting the historic agreement.

Read the full release below.

VA Joint Contractor Press Release_FINAL

VIDEO: Tie Vote in District Election Resolved by the Roll of a Die

Martinez, CA (December 7, 2018) – For the first time in the 100-plus year history of the Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID), a District election was decided by the roll of a die. Larry Enos, Jr., was reelected as BBID Division I Director following a highly unusual election tiebreaking procedure.

BBID Division I Director Larry Enos Jr., left, and challenger Pete Petrovich, right (seated), moments before the election tiebreaker.

The vote between Enos, Jr. and his challenge Pete Petrovich was tied, 51-51, after all of the votes were counted following last month’s election. On Friday, the two candidates joined elections officials at the Contra Costa County Elections Department in Martinez. Enos, Jr. and Petrovich were directed to roll a 20-sided die three times, with the highest combined score as the winner. Enos, Jr. won by a count of 51-45, giving him the deciding margin for his reelection.

The 20-sided die used to break the election tie.

The roll of the die was performed pursuant to California Elections Code 15651, which states in part: If at any election … two or more persons receive an equal and the highest number of votes for an office to be voted for in more than one county, the Secretary of State shall forthwith summon the candidates who have received the tie votes … [and] shall at that time and place determine the tie by lot [lottery].”

The final tally of the election tiebreaker, giving the victory to Larry Enos, Jr.

Elections officials said they could not recall another time in the history of Contra Costa County that a tied special district election had been resolved with the roll of a die.

Enos, Jr. has served on the BBID board for the last seven years, representing Division I in Contra Costa County. As a result of today’s tiebreaker, he will serve another four-year term.

Meanwhile, in BBID Division III in Contra Costa and Alameda Counties, BBID Board Vice President Tim Maggiore ran unopposed and was reelected for another four-year term.

SLDMWA Announces New Executive Director

Los Banos, CA (December 6, 2018) – The San Luis & Delta-Mendota Water Authority (Water Authority) Board of Directors voted today to approve an employment contract for Federico Barajas to fill the position of its Executive Director, replacing Assistant Executive Director Frances Mizuno who has been serving on an interim basis since June 1.

Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID) is a member agency of the Water Authority.

Read the full release below!

San Luis Release 12.6.18