The state Department of Water Resources (DWR) announced Dec. 1 that it would provide 5% of contracted amounts across the board for agricultural and municipal customers in 2023. That may sound bad, but the initial allocation announced for 2022 was 0% for ag and only enough water for municipal contractors to protect health and safety….
by Lois Henry
Several public interest groups sued the City of Bakersfield Nov. 30 alleging the city has been derelict in its operation of the Kern River by diverting most of its flows to agriculture and other uses leaving a dry riverbed through the heart of town. “The river is dry, but not because of a lack of…
by Rose Horowitch, SJV Water reporting intern
A lawsuit over groundwater plans in the northern end of the San Joaquin Valley is being closely watched as it could have implications for how the state’s groundwater mandate moves forward, according to a recent briefing on the issue at the Kern Groundwater Authority. At the Nov. 16 meeting, authority attorney Valerie Kincaid explained that…
by Rose Horowitch, SJV Water reporting intern
After an election night marked by statewide victories for moderate Democrats, one of the San Joaquin Valley’s biggest agricultural water districts assessed how best to maintain its influence.  During the Nov. 9 Board of Directors meeting of the Semitropic Water Storage District, former Democratic state senator Dean Florez, now a lobbyist for Semitropic, updated the…
by SJV Water
The City of Coalinga got word Nov. 2 that the Department of Water Resources would pick up the entire $1.2 million tab for supplemental water the city was forced to buy after drought cut its federal supplies to the bone. DWR press release below: DWR Provides Funding to City of Coalinga for Emergency Water Purchase State…
by Lois Henry
Flows on the lower Kern River are split up among a hydra of canals starting just west of Hart Park. We talk with local experts who explain who owns those canals and where the water goes under the Law of the River. There’s a lot to learn so we’re splitting the lower Kern into two…
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Water Resources

Maven’s Notebook is an excellent daily accounting of California water happenings statewide.