DISTRICT NEWSLETTER

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SPRING 2021

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JANUARY 2020

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SEPTEMBER 2019

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SUMMER 2020

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NOVEMBER 2019

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APRIL 2020

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OCTOBER 2019

 

DISTRICT NEWS & UPDATES

Governor Issues Notice - Prepare for Drought Impacts Statewide

June 8

2021

Notice to Public Drinking Water Systems

Ongoing Dry Conditions in California - Prepare for Drought Impacts Statewide

Water Source Contingency and Conservation Planning

With California experiencing its second consecutive dry year, and due to the effects of climate change, we are all reminded that drought planning and conservation are now a California way of life.

 

The first six months of water year 2021 rank as the fourth driest on record. With warm temperatures and extended dry conditions, melting Sierra Nevada snow is soaking into parched ground rather than running into reservoirs. On some streams, runoff is lower now than during the critically dry year of 2014–15.

These conditions may contribute to reduced yield from your ground and/or surface water supply sources, challenges with water quality, and difficulties in meeting normal system demands resulting in water shortages or low pressure during peak demand periods, such as those that normally occur in the late summer and early fall months.

Sustained preparation and planning are critical. Most of California’s water systems were able to manage drought impacts and maintain the high quality of water delivered to their customers during the last drought by taking actions early.

The State Water Resources Control Board urges you to prioritize three actions: 1) closely evaluate your water supply; 2) develop a contingency plan to mitigate any water supply problems that might result from current and future conditions, and 3) encourage your customers to conserve water voluntarily. The following components should be included in your system evaluation and drought contingency plan:

 

Evaluate Your Water Supply

An accurate determination of the system source capacity, including ground water levels, well yields, well-pumping capacities and pump bowl settings (depth to the pump’s intake). The information you collect should include the following:

 

a.  Monitor the depth-to-ground-water level in your wells under both pumping and non-pumping conditions: Depth-to-groundwater is a very good indicator of well capacity. Too often, a well’s pumping capacity is used as the sole indicator of pumping conditions with no attention given to ground water depth. As a result, depletion of the ground water table over time may not be apparent. In addition, not monitoring groundwater levels over pump bowls can ruin good pumping equipment if excessive drawdown in the groundwater table allows air to enter the pumping equipment. If water levels drop below your pump bowl settings, significant damage to pump impellors, bearings and motors is likely to occur. As a result, your system could be without water until a new pump can be installed, and you might encounter significant equipment and labor costs to replace burned-out pumps and motors.

 

b.  Read and record well pumping capacity: We strongly recommend that you read and record your well flow totalizing meter on a regular basis. This can help you monitor usage and identify your degree of water loss or

“unaccounted-for-water.” Unaccounted-for-water is the difference between the water you produce from your sources and the amount actually delivered to customers.

 

c.  Monitor and record the water levels in your system storage tanks during various high-demand periods of the day: We recommend that you monitor and record the level of the water in your storage tanks at the same time each day, which will help you identify increasing system demand or reduced source capacity conditions that can lead to major supply problems.

 

d.  Repair any obvious leaks in your storage tanks and distribution system.

If your distribution system is over 25 years old, consider starting a leak detection program to identify and repair leaks in your distribution system that may not be obvious, particularly unaccounted-for-water losses. Water that is not wasted through unrepaired leaks will be available to customers when needed. It will also save you money, because you will consume less power for pumping water that will ultimately be wasted anyway.

Create a Contingency Plan

 

To start your drought contingency plan, review your past water use data and anticipate upcoming demand. Then, plan appropriately for anticipated shortages. Minimally, your plan should include:

 

a.  Serious water conservation measures that will help mitigate water shortage problems: If your system has experienced water shortages in prior years, and additional source capacity has not been brought online, it is imperative to begin conservation efforts immediately. Outdoor watering, and other non-essential water use should be curtailed.

 

b.  A temporary or permanent interconnection to a neighboring utility that has excess production capacity: Such interconnections should be

discussed with the appropriate Division of Drinking Water District office before implemented. Arrangements for an interconnection should be made ahead of an emergency, so now is the time to plan one if appropriate.

c.  Installation of treatment on standby sources that have water quality issues: If you anticipate that you will need to treat standby sources to maintain drinking water quality standards, begin the planning and permitting process now and install the necessary equipment as soon as possible. Treatment equipment and constructional materials are already in tight supply and may not be available later to cover an emergency installation. Some treatment requires testing before it can come online, and this should be considered in your planning timeline.

d.  Join a Mutual Aid & Assistance Program: Belonging to mutual aid associations, such as California Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network (CalWARN), will give you access to information on topics like emergency preparedness, disaster response, and mutual assistance processes for public and private water and wastewater utilities. Benefits include a mutual assistance agreement, process for sharing emergency resources among signatories statewide, and resources to respond and recover more quickly from a disaster or drought.

It is important that even for systems that use groundwater wells that have never experienced an outage, you take steps to verify water table depth and well pump settings as indicated above. If you believe your water system will be facing water shortage problems, we recommend you contact your district office to alert them and work through the steps needed to remain in compliance.

 

Create awareness that voluntary conservation is critical

 

Conservation extends existing supplies, helping to ensure California’s communities and ecosystems weather this crisis. The State Water Board urges you to work with all customers in your service area to voluntarily reduce:

 

a.  Watering of outdoor landscapes that causes incidental runoff onto adjacent property, non-irrigated areas, private and public walkways, roadways, parking lots, or structures.

 

b.  Individuals washing privately-owned cars with a hose, unless they are using a positive action shut-off nozzle.

 

c.  Applying potable water directly to driveways and sidewalks.

 

d.  Using potable water in an ornamental fountain or other decorative water feature.

 

e.  Using water to irrigate turf and ornamental landscapes during and within 48 hours after measurable rainfall.

f.    Serving drinking water that was not requested in eating or drinking establishments.

 

g.   Irrigating turf on public street medians or publicly owned and/or maintained landscaped areas between the street and sidewalk.

 

The State Water Board also encourages you to coordinate with:

a.  Hotels and motels to ensure they allow guests to opt out of having towels and linens laundered daily.

 

b.  Homeowners’ associations, community service organizations, or similar entities to ensure they support water-efficient landscaping.

For more information about water supply planning, water conservation, drought-related events, and more, visit the Water Board’s new drought webpages. They include a new visualization tool that allows you to explore water system supplies and demands. The water conservation portal offers water-saving tips and suggested conservation measures, references to policies and laws, and more resources. These pages will be continuously updated so check back regularly.

Thank you for your continued partnership in ensuring Californians have access to high quality water. Together, we can make every drop count.

Click here to download the complete letter.

Customer Alert - Water Use During Fires

September 9

2020

This is an important message for North Yuba Water District customers. It’s currently September 9th at 4:00pm. I’m Jeff Maupin, North Yuba Water District General Manager. It is extremely important that you avoid all unnecessary water use at this time.

There is currently no fire in the District and none of the District infrastructure is currently threatened. Please do not leave your sprinklers on for an extended time and please do not use massive amounts of water to soak your property. These actions are currently draining the water supply and may result in a lack of water available to fire personnel should the fire move into our District.

Again, this is September 9th at 4:00pm, please avoid all unnecessary water use so that ample water supply is available to fire personnel if needed.

Please share this message with your neighbors and report any excessive water waste through our website form at w-w-w-dot-n-y-w-d-dot-org

For updated Yuba County emergency information and to sign-up for the county’s CodeRed alert system, visit w-w-w-dot-be-prepared-yuba-dot-org

Thank you for your support in conserving water during this critical time.

Yuba Water Agency Approves Nearly $14 Million in Loans, Grants

July 8

2020

The Yuba Water Agency is committing close to $14 million in grants and loans for water infrastructure upgrades, levee maintenance and Yuba County’s annual CalPERS payment.

– The largest commitment – a nearly $10.9 million loan – will be used by the county to make its annual unfunded liability payment to CalPERS in one lump sum, rather than financing it through the system at a 6.5 percent interest rate. The low-interest loan is expected to save the county approximately $325,000. This is the third year in a row that the agency has provided the loan to the county.

– The agency’s second largest commitment will see the city of Wheatland receive a $1.3 million grant and a $1.3 million low-interest loan to begin design engineering of improvements to its wastewater treatment system and connection to the Olivehurst Public Utility District’s existing wastewater plant. The improvements and connection to OPUD’s facility is expected to protect groundwater quality, improve water supply reliability and expand economic development along the Highway 65 corridor.

“This funding will help us get the project shovel-ready,” said Jim Goodwin, Wheatland city manager, in a press release. “That’s going to be incredibly important to help us qualify for state and federal grants as recovery efforts get underway.”

– The North Yuba Water District will also benefit from a $480,000 grant to improve water supply by piping the district’s Oreleve Ditch, which is a mile-long section of the larger Forbestown Ditch. The Forbestown Ditch is currently unpiped and is prone to breaches. Up to 60 percent of the water in the ditch is lost due to seepage and evaporation, and it experiences contamination issues. The district serves approximately 3,100 customers.

– Lastly, the Marysville Fire Department will receive a $17,500 grant to help with the maintenance and inspections of levees and to reduce fire risk, which is part of the department’s vegetation management program. The funding will be used to continue the program and hire three additional seasonal positions to help manage vegetation along the levee. Vegetation management is carried out along the levees of the Yuba and Feather rivers and Jack Slough.

The funding committed to the various projects was approved by the Yuba Water Agency’s Board of Directors during a meeting on Tuesday.

Yuba Water Agency approves grant for project to provide reliable, safe drinking water

October 17

2019

PRESS RELEASE COURTESY OF THE YUBA WATER AGENCY

Residents in Challenge, Rackerby, Brownsville and Forbestown will have a more reliable, safe drinking water supply with the help of funding from Yuba Water Agency. 

 

The grant, worth up to $225,725, was approved today by the water agency and provides the necessary funds for the North Yuba Water District to continue its Forbestown Ditch to Pipeline Replacement Project, which is the conveyance system that provides water to approximately 3,100 customers in the foothill communities. 

 

“This is a very good project that will be extremely beneficial to the community,” said Yuba Water Agency Vice Chairman Randy Fletcher. “It will ensure that North Yuba Water District customers have better access to a reliable supply of safe drinking water.”

 

Water is currently delivered through an unpiped ditch, which has experienced multiple breaches in the past. Additionally, up to 60 percent of the water traveling down the ditch is lost due to seepage and evaporation, and the remaining is prone to contamination from dirt, trash, metals and illegal marijuana grows.

 

“Piping the ditch will vastly improve, if not completely resolve, the issues that we currently experience,” said NYWD General Manager Jeff Maupin. “This will be extremely beneficial for delivering water to our customers and curtailing the amount of water that is currently lost.”

 

NYWD will use the funding from Yuba Water Agency for the next phase of the project, which includes, but is not limited to, California Environmental Quality Act work, landowner agreements and further grant preparations. 


Yuba Water Agency invests in infrastructure projects like this to ensure access to a safe, reliable water supply for Yuba County residents, which is one of the agency’s primary mission areas.    
 

Forbestown Ditch Piping Project Plan Approved

September 24

2019

In a major milestone for the Forbestown Ditch Piping Project, the North Yuba Water District (NYWD) Board of Directors approved the Project plans and scope of work during a special meeting earlier this month.

Approximately two years ago, NYWD received a $500,000 planning grant from the California State Water Resources Control Board “Prop 1 funds” to complete this engineering phase of the Project, including creation of a construction plan and final construction budget, now estimated at $10 Million.

With help from a second grant, awarded Monday from the Yuba Water Agency for $225,000, the Project will continue uninterrupted into permitting and environmental reviews, the final phase before construction.

Originally dug in the 1860’s, the Forbestown Ditch is an unlined, open canal, approximately 10 miles long. The Ditch conveys water to the NYWD Treatment Pond, and is the sole source of drinking water for approximately 3,100 residents of Brownsville, Challenge, Rackerby and Forbestown.

Moving to a piped Ditch will lower the possibility of breaches like the those recently experienced in 2017 and 2018. A piped Ditch will also save a significant amount of water lost from seepage and evaporation, increase the amount of water available for customers and eliminate a vast majority of dirt, trash and contamination from entering the treatment pond.

“Our customers have endured massive blowouts on the Ditch, and periods of uncertainty with their drinking water,” said NYWD General Manager, Jeff Maupin. “Piping the Ditch was literally a ‘pipe dream’ until a few years ago. Now through the actions of our Board of Directors and the availability of Prop 1 funds, piping the Ditch is finally a possibility.”

NYWD was recently designated as a Severely Disadvantaged Community (SDAC) with an annual median household income less than 60 percent of the Statewide annual income. Potential funding sources to complete the construction include an additional Prop 1 grant of up to $5 Million from the State and a matching grant of up to $5 Million from the Yuba Water Agency.

“This is truly an historic project for the North Yuba Water District,” said Randy Fletcher, Yuba County Supervisor and Yuba Water Agency Director. “When you consider the Ditch was constructed when Abraham Lincoln was President, these residents are long overdue for a safe, secure way to receive their water.”

The Forbestown Ditch has quite a storied past. First called the “Miner’s Ditch,” the Ditch and the District have changed ownership and names several times, and weathered numerous epic blowouts over its 150 years. Historical photos of the “Miner’s Ditch” are on the NYWD website, and an actual segment of an old wooden flume, used to repair a breached segment of the Ditch, is on display at the Forbestown Museum.

State Water Resource Control Board Ends Investigation of NYWD, Finds No Wrongdoing

September 10

2019

Complaints by two local unnamed residents were filed with the State Water Board, claiming NYWD had intentionally submitted misleading statements in a grant application. This prompted an investigation which was closed today and a statement was issued by the State Water Resource s Control Board Office of Enforcement clearing NYWD of all allegations:

"CONCLUSIONS: The investigation did not find credible evidence of an intentional omission of facts, misrepresentation, or fabrication of data that would alter the eligibility of the grant application. The Quit Claim relationship between NYWD and SFWPA was provided in the application. Reliable aluminum data showing exceedances of the MCL in the ditch water was provided by the NYWD in their application, and that data was not treated by the DFA as significant in ranking the application. The DFA acknowledged the benefit to irrigation water customers as well as to domestic users in their evaluation of the application prepared by Northstar and Mr. Maupin on behalf of the NYWD. The grant application was reviewed, in accordance with the DFA’s standard practice, in a 19-step process documented in the application assessment package. The application package provided by NYWD was compliant with State Water Board requirements, and as a result the Forbestown Ditch Planning Project was determined to be eligible for funding."

Click here to download the full State Water Resources Control Board statement.

Forbestown Ditch Breach Repaired

May 7

2019

On May 7th, 2019, the following robocall was sent to NYWD domestic water customers:

This is an update message for our customers. I’m Jeff Maupin, General Manager of North Yuba Water District. Late Thursday a blowout occurred in a section of the Forbestown Ditch, north of the treatment plant. I’m happy to report the repairs have been successfully completed and water is again flowing to the treatment plant.

Thank you for your help conserving water during this incident, it is now safe to resume all normal water activities.

Should any new issue arise, I will contact you like this, with an automated call again.

Thank you for your patience and support. You can always reach us here at the North Yuba Water District at 530-675-2567.

Forbestown Ditch Breach - Message to Domestic Water Customers

May 5

2019

On May 5th, 2019, the following robocall was sent to NYWD domestic water customers:

This is an important message for our customers. I’m Jeff Maupin, General Manager of North Yuba Water District. Late Thursday a blowout occurred in a section of the Forbestown Ditch, north of the treatment plant. This breach has completely stopped the flow of water reaching our treatment pond, the source for your potable water.

Repair crews have already identified the location of the breach and begun repairs. We believe the repairs can be complete by early this week.

The treatment pond stores enough water for 10-14 days of potable water, so we do not anticipate a disruption in service, but in an abundance of caution, we are asking all North Yuba Water District customers to actively conserve water and avoid all unnecessary water-related activities until the ditch is repaired.

I will contact you again when more information becomes available. Thank you. Should you have any questions before then, please contact the North Yuba Water District at 530-675-2567.

NYWD Receives Grant for Irrigation System Repairs

December 21

2018

North Yuba Water District (NYWD) has received a $75,000 grant from the United States Bureau of Reclamation’s Water SMART program to make additional improvements to their irrigation canal system.

The project enabled NYWD to significantly reduce water loss and ditch maintenance expenses by piping a portion of the canal especially prone to water seepage.

“This year, and in all years when Mother Nature does not give us an overabundance of water, we were not able to provide an irrigation season to our customers,” said NYWD General Manager, Jeff Maupin. “It’s important that we piped the worst spots, so if Mother Nature gives us a good year again, we can stretch that water supply a little further.”

Letters of support for the grant were submitted by Congressman John Garamendi, Senator Jim Nielsen, Assemblyman James Gallagher, the Yuba Water Agency and Yuba County Supervisor Randy Fletcher.

“Irrigation water is critical for small agricultural businesses and critical for fire protection,” said Supervisor Fletcher.  “I was happy to write this letter of support and I will continue to do everything I can to secure funding for future NYWD projects.”

NYWD provides irrigation water to over 100 parcels in Dobbins and Oregon House, and provides domestic water service to approximately 2500 residents in Brownsville, Forbestown, Rackerby and Challenge. For more information about the NYWD, visit www.NYWD.org.

 
 
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Video - 2018 Irrigation Ditch Repairs

September 27

2018

In 2017, we identified locations on the Irrigation Ditches with the worst water loss. As promised, in late summer 2018, we began installing pipe at these hot-spots. A video showing one finished piped area is now on our Irrigation web page. Over the last couple months, our crews have been working on about a dozen locations throughout the irrigation ditches. Piping the worst seepage locations will help us to maximize any water available in coming years.

Thank you for your patience through this process. Should you have any questions, please contact the North Yuba Water District at 530-675-2567.

Maintenance and Repairs to Irrigation Ditches Started

August 20

2018

Here's the text of an automated call sent to irrigation customers today:

This is a message for our North Yuba Water District irrigation customers. I’m Jeff Maupin, General Manager.  

Last year, we identified locations on the Irrigation Ditches with the worst water loss. As promised, today we began installing pipe at these hot-spots. Over the next couple months, our crews will be working on about a dozen locations throughout the irrigation ditches. Piping the worst seepage locations will help us to maximize any water available in coming years.

Thank you for your patience through this process. Should you have any questions, please contact the North Yuba Water District at 530-675-2567.

North Yuba Water District Announces Maintenance and Repairs to Irrigation Ditches

May 22

2018

Brownsville, CA – May 22, 2018 – North Yuba Water District (NYWD) will begin maintenance, grooming and a series of repairs and piping projects to their approximately 22 miles of irrigation ditches.

In addition to domestic water service, NYWD provides irrigation water to 119 customers in Dobbins and Oregon House. Irrigation customers were informed last month that there would be no irrigation water this season due to a number of reasons, including onerous contractual obligations with neighboring South Feather Water and Power (SFWP), significant water losses along the unpiped Forbestown Ditch and continued drought conditions.

While the irrigation ditches are dry this summer, NYWD will perform a series of maintenance and repairs:

  • Inmate work crews are set to start this week clearing overgrown areas.

  • The District’s recently purchased excavator will be put to use to de-silt and shape the irrigation ditches.

  • The excavator’s flail mower attachment will be used to remove debris and vegetation.

  • Ten sections of the irrigation ditch that traditionally experience the greatest seepage issues, totaling approximately 1,700 linear feet (about 1/3 mile), will be piped.

  • “Walter’s Y,” the convergence point of the three sections of irrigation ditches, will be rebuilt with reinforced concreate and larger headgates.

 

“It’s important that we make productive use of this dry season and complete as many maintenance and repair projects as we can for our irrigation customers,” said Maupin, “so if Mother Nature gives us a good year again, we can stretch supply a little further.”

 

Through a $500,000 State grant, NYWD is currently in the planning and engineering phase to pipe the full ten miles of the Forbestown Ditch. Moving to a piped Forbestown Ditch would save a significant amount of water lost from seepage and evaporation, eliminate a vast majority of dirt, trash and contamination from entering the treatment pond and increase the amount of water available for irrigation customers. The total project is estimated between $8 Million and $14 Million. Potential funding sources for the construction phase of the project include Prop 1 grants and financing through the Yuba County Water Agency.

Forbestown Ditch Pipeline project gets a much-needed financial boost

May 1

2018

Many residents in the Yuba County foothills are now one step closer to a more reliable source of drinking water after today’s Yuba County Water Agency vote to approve a large grant for the Forbestown Ditch Pipeline project.

The approximately $326,000 grant will help cover a portion of the local costs for the North Yuba Water District’s project, which provides drinking water to nearly 3,100 customers.

“The current ditch was dug in the 1860’s, and it’s prone to blowouts from severe weather and has a lot of leakage,” said North Yuba Water District General Manager Jeff Maupin. “The goal is to curtail those losses and create a reliable source of water to all of our customers, and this money helps bring this closer to fruition.”

For more than 150 years, the Forbestown Ditch has served as the main domestic water conveyance system for the communities of Brownsville, Forbestown, Challenge and Rackerby, but has endured many breaches and breaks. Additionally, the open canal loses an average of 35 percent of its water due to seepage and evaporation, and faces contamination from dirt, trash and chemicals.

“This project is necessary to be able to provide Yuba County residents with a safe and reliable source of drinking water,” said YCWA Board Vice-Chairman Randy Fletcher. “We’ve been working with North Yuba Water District for the past several years on solutions to this complicated project, and it will be so rewarding to see it complete.”

Since 1992, YCWA has provided four loans to the district, totaling more than $408,000. NYWD recently satisfied the latest and final of its loan commitments, enabling YCWA to provide this grant for future work on the Forbestown Ditch Pipeline project.

YCWA is able to support this grant because this project fits into the agency’s primary mission areas of water supply reliability and flood risk reduction.

http://www.ycwa.com/new/nywd-grant/

North Yuba Water District Approves Over $650,000 in Projects

December 21

2017

North Yuba Water District’s (NYWD) Board of Directors has unanimously approved over $650,000 of capital improvement projects and equipment purchases, including water treatment plant upgrades and a fleet replacement.

NYWD’s Treatment Plant, which provides domestic water service for approximately 2500 residents of Brownsville, Forbestown, Rackerby and Challenge, will receive a complete electrical rewiring and a computer operating system upgrade.

“The plant’s wiring and computer system were installed thirty years ago,” said Jeff Maupin, NYWD General Manager. “Using reserve funds to make these upgrades now makes practical sense.”

Also approved was a fleet replacement of seven vehicles and two tractors, including four half-ton trucks, a three-quarter ton truck, a dump truck, a one-ton utility truck, a backhoe and the addition of a new excavator with flail mower and bucket attachments. The excavator will have the capacity to remove debris and silts from the irrigation ditch, groom the embankments and grade the ditch access roads.

“We have vehicles that date back to the 1970’s,” said Maupin. “The cost to maintain them just doesn’t pencil out any longer. Newer vehicles and tractors are also much safer, with built-in safety features that just didn’t exist thirty years ago.”

All of these approved projects will be 100% funded through reserves.

In addition, NYWD is currently working on several grant-funded projects, including mapping the water distribution system, inventorying water meters to prioritize replacement needs, sizing a replacement Challenge water tank, and engineering for the Forbestown Ditch Pipeline project.

$500,000 grant awarded for new Forbestown Ditch pipeline

October 24

2017

Appeal- Democrat | By Jake Abbott

A state grant for half a million dollars was awarded to the North Yuba Water District to help cover the costs of planning and engineering a new Forbestown Ditch pipeline. The upgrade will help mitigate washouts during heavy rainfall and reduce the amount of water lost to seepage and evaporation.

“Our customers have endured massive blowouts on the ditch, and periods of uncertainty with their drinking water,” said Jeff Maupin, NYWD general manager, in a press release. “Piping the ditch was literally a ‘pipe dream’ until this year. Now through the actions of our Board of Directors and the availability of Prop. 1 funds, piping the ditch is finally a possibility.”

The California State Water Resources Control Board awarded the planning grant to the district. Maupin said the grant will go toward creating a construction plan and final budget to pipe the ditch. The total cost of the pipeline project is estimated to be anywhere from $8 million to $14 million.

The Forbestown Ditch is about 10 miles long and is the sole source of drinking water for approximately 3,500 NYWD customers. The open canal – which is unlined and has had problems in the past with washouts and water loss – conveys water to a treatment pond for NYWD customers.

The district’s board decided nearly a year ago that establishing a piped ditch was the best route to take in order to ensure customers had a reliable source of water. 

The pipeline is expected to increase the amount of water available to customers while eliminating the possibility of materials like dirt, trash and other contaminants from entering the treatment pond. 

The district will look for additional construction grants during the planning phase to help cover the overall cost. Potential funding sources include a Prop. 1 grant of up to $5 million and a grant from the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Hazard Mitigation Program of up to $3 million, according to a press release.

Feds reimburse North Yuba Water District for storm damage

August 23

2017

Appeal- Democrat | By Jake Abbott

The North Yuba Water District was recently notified it would be reimbursed more than $132,000 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for storm-related damages that occurred this past winter to its Forbestown Ditch.

With FEMA approval, the California Office of Emergency Services issued the district two checks for a total of $132,538.22.

“The funds reimburse the repair cost for two storm-related blowouts on the Forbestown Ditch that occurred earlier this year,” said Jeff Maupin, district manager, in a press release.

The first blowout to the ditch occurred on Jan. 11, when a landslide washed out a 160-foot stretch of the Forbestown Ditch, costing the district close to $48,000 to fix. The ditch is used to convey water to a treatment pond, which is the main source of potable water for approximately 900 district customers. With the landslide threatening its customers’ main source of water, the district made emergency repairs within a week of the blowout.

A second landslide, on Feb. 7, compromised another 200 feet of the ditch further downstream of the initial blowout, which cost the district about $94,000 to correct. This incident also prompted emergency repairs to ensure the channel feeding the treatment pond was not compromised for an extended period of time.

The district installed a pipe in both instances to help convey water through the channel. Officials at the time said a piped ditch would lower the possibility of another breach, save a significant amount of water lost from seepage and evaporation, increase the amount of water available for customers, and eliminate a vast majority of dirt, trash and contamination from entering the treatment pond.

Maupin said the district was reimbursed 93.75 percent of the cost for both projects, with FEMA paying 75 percent and the rest coming from Cal OES. 

For the January repairs costing $47,595.07, the North Yuba Water District was reimbursed $44,620.38. For the February fix that costed $93,779.02, the state issued a check for $87,917.84.

Open RFP for Legal Services

July 27

2017

The North Yuba Water District, located in Brownsville CA has posted an RFP for legal services at our web site (nywd.org). We invite all interested legal firms who meet the search criteria to apply.

Inmate Work Crews Called a 'Win-Win'

June 13

2017

Appeal-Democrat

By Chris Kaufman

 

A dozen inmates, dressed in orange jumpsuits, made short work of an overgrown irrigation ditch on Monday in Dobbins.

The 12 men, from Washington Ridge Crew 3 in Nevada City, are working with North Yuba Water District employees to clear out the most overgrown areas in the district's more than 22 miles of ditches.

The inmate work crews include nonviolent, non-sex offenders who have earned a place in the program. Yuba County Sheriff, Steve Durfor, said the program is a partnership between the Sheriff’s Department, Yuba County Fire Department and organizations like NYWD. The work crews provide a cost-effective labor source for budget-strapped districts like NYWD.

“It’s a win-win,” said Durfor. “Work programs allow our inmates to make a positive difference in our community, while giving the inmates job skills and a sense of self-worth and dignity that comes from a productive day’s work.”

The NYWD provides irrigation water to over 100 parcels in Dobbins and Oregon House, and provides domestic water service to approximately 2500 residents in Brownsville, Forbestown, Rackerby and Challenge...

NYWD Utilizing Inmate Work Crews

June 7

2017

As the rainy season finally winds down, the North Yuba Water District (NYWD) is employing Yuba County inmate work crews to clear the irrigation ditches in Dobbins and Oregon House. The crews will remove invasive plants, brush and weeds.

Work began late May and will continue for approximately one month, through the end of June. NYWD Manager, Jeff Maupin, said recent rains have propelled the growth of weeds throughout the irrigation ditches.

“Weeds reduce the flow of water in the ditches during the irrigation season and they become a fire hazard after the irrigation season,” he said.

The inmate work crews include nonviolent, non-sex offenders who have earned a place in the program. Yuba County Sheriff, Steve Durfor, said the program is a partnership between the Sheriff’s Department, Yuba County Fire Department and organizations like NYWD. The work crews provide a cost-effective labor source for budget-strapped districts like NYWD.

“It’s a win-win,” said Durfor. “Work programs allow our inmates to make a positive difference in our community, while giving the inmates job skills and a sense of self-worth and dignity that comes from a productive day’s work.”

The NYWD provides irrigation water to over 100 parcels in Dobbins and Oregon House, and provides domestic water service to approximately 2500 residents in Brownsville, Forbestown, Rackerby and Challenge.

Irrigation Policy Amendment

June 6

2017

Amendment to the irrigation policy fee schedule to include a customer generated call out fee. A fee of $65.00 per call during normal business hours and $170.00 per call after hours and weekends will be charged to the customers when staff investigates a customer complaint and finds that no problem exists. However, if a problem with district facilities is found no fee will be charged. (Approved 5/25/2017)

Forbestown Ditch Breach Repaired

March 13

2017

Repairs to the breached area of the Forbestown Ditch were completed yesterday.

The breach originally occurred February 7, when a portion of the mountain side supporting the Forbestown Ditch washed out approximately a 200-foot section of the Ditch. This was the second breach in the Ditch in two months. No disruption in service occurred during either breach because water runoff remained high and the treatment pond remained near capacity.

“This second breach took longer to fix because the mountainside was so saturated and it simply wasn’t safe to start work,” said Jeff Maupin, NYWD Manager. “Luckily mother nature finally dried things out enough last week to make the repairs.”

An automated call went to NYWD customers today with news of the finished repair.

“Another big thanks to our customers who again showed great patience and support during this breach,” said Maupin. “We deal with the reality that the Forbestown Ditch is an open ditch, exposed to the environment and subject to complications. The long-term goal is to pipe the ditch, which will make it much less susceptible to a breach.”

In late December, the newly sworn-in NYWD Board of Directors voted to pursue a $500,000 State grant to begin planning and engineering to pipe the Forbestown Ditch. Moving to a piped Ditch would lower the possibility of a breach like the one experienced last week. A piped Ditch would also save a significant amount of water lost from seepage and evaporation, increase the amount of water available for customers and eliminate a vast majority of dirt, trash and contamination from entering the treatment pond.

Another Breach in the North Yuba Water District (NYWD) Forbestown Ditch – No Disruption in Service Anticipated

February 8

2017

A new breach in the Forbestown Ditch was discovered yesterday.  Approximately 200 feet of the ditch has washed out, about 230 feet downstream of the previous breach that occurred on January 11. No residents or structures are in the vicinity of the breach.

The ditch feeds the NYWD treatment pond, the source of water for approximately 2500 residents. The treatment pond stores enough water for 10-14 days of potable water production, and this current storm is producing enough runoff below the breach to extend this timeframe. While no disruption in service is anticipated at this time, customers are again being asked to conserve water. A call with this new information went to NYWD customers today.

“Again we are asking our customers to avoid all unnecessary water-related activates until the ditch is repaired,” said Jeff Maupin, NYWD Manager. “The contractors have been out there, but it’s just not safe to begin any work until this storm passes. It’s hard to express how saturated the ground is in that area.”

Northstar Engineering of Chico and Duke Sherwood Contracting Inc. of Oroville are again performing the work. The previous January breach was repaired ahead of schedule and below budget. As with the previous breach, the affected area will be piped as the repair method.

“Piping the entire Forbestown Ditch is really what’s needed,” said Maupin, “until that is accomplished, we will always be dealing with an open ditch, exposed to the environment and subject to complications like this.”

The NYWD Board of Directors voted in December to pursue a $500,000 State grant to begin planning and engineering to pipe the Forbestown Ditch. Moving to a piped Ditch would lower the possibility of breaches like those experienced over the past month. A piped Ditch would also save a significant amount of water lost from seepage and evaporation, increase the amount of water available for irrigation customers and eliminate a vast majority of dirt, trash and contamination from entering the treatment pond.

Additional calls will go to NYWD customers as updates on the breach become available.

Repairs Complete to Forbestown Ditch!

January 17

2017

Emergency repairs to the breached area of the Forbestown Ditch were completed Monday, ahead of schedule and below budget.

The NYWD Board of Directors had allocated up to $100,000 to the emergency repairs with an estimated timeline of 7 days for completion. Northstar Engineering of Chico, and Duke Sherwood Contracting Inc. of Oroville, performed the work, completing the repairs in 4 days.

The breach originally occurred January 11, when a portion of the mountain side supporting the Forbestown Ditch washed out approximately a 160-foot section of the Ditch, north of the treatment plant. The breach significantly lowered the amount of water reaching the treatment pond, the source for potable water production for the approximately 900 NYWD customers. With 10-14 days of raw water supply in the pond, NYWD customers were asked to conserve water until the breach was repaired. No disruption in service occurred.

“Our thanks go out to the top-notch contractors who worked around the clock this weekend to complete the repairs, and big thanks to our customers who showed great patience and support during this stressful time,” said Jeff Maupin, NYWD Manager.

An automated call went to NYWD customers today with news of the finished repair.

“We don’t anticipate any further issues with the Ditch from the storms this week,” said Maupin, “but it’s important to remember the Forbestown Ditch is an open ditch, exposed to the environment and subject to complications.”

In late December, the newly sworn-in NYWD Board of Directors voted to pursue a $500,000 State grant to begin planning and engineering to pipe the Forbestown Ditch. Moving to a piped Ditch would lower the possibility of a breach like the one experienced last week. A piped Ditch would also save a significant amount of water lost from seepage and evaporation, increase the amount of water available for irrigation customers and eliminate a vast majority of dirt, trash and contamination from entering the treatment pond.

North Yuba Water District (NYWD) Forbestown Ditch Breach Update – No Disruption in Service Anticipated

January 13

2017

Within the early morning hours Wednesday, a portion of the mountain side supporting the Forbestown Ditch washed out approximately a 160-foot section of the Ditch, north of the treatment plant. This breach has significantly lowered the amount of water reaching the treatment pond, the source for potable water for the approximately 900 NYWD customers. No residents or structures are in the vicinity of the breach.

During a posted emergency meeting Wednesday night, the NYWD Board of Directors voted to transfer funds from reserves to start immediate work on repairs. Based on the initial assessment, we believe the repairs will be complete within 7 days.

The treatment pond stores enough water for 10-14 days of water for potable production, so no disruption in service is anticipated at this time. In an abundance of caution, NYWD is asking all customers to actively conserve water. Calls went to NYWD customers yesterday with this message.

“We are asking our customers to avoid all unnecessary water-related activities until the ditch is repaired,” said Jeff Maupin, NYWD Manager.

“We are very lucky to have Northstar Engineering of Chico and Duke Sherwood Contracting Inc. of Oroville doing the work,” said Maupin. “Given the amount of damage throughout our region from this storm, there is no shortage of work for top-notch contractors right now, so having these firms available to do the work is truly special.”

The site of the current breach had undergone surface repairs within the past few years, but the extent of the foundational issues was unknown until Wednesday’s event. “The layer of rock exposed after this breach was previously unknown to the District and most likely unknown to the original constructors of the ditch,” said Maupin. “Now that we know the root of the issue, our goal is to properly fix this section and avoid future problems.”

Randy Fletcher, the Yuba County Supervisor for this area, is working as a liaison between NYWD, the Office of Emergency Service, Yuba County and the Yuba County Water Agency. “The communication lines are open, if additional resources are needed that these agencies can provide, we are ready to help,” said Fletcher.

Additional calls will go to NYWD customers as updates become available.