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Intervention

The Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) authorizes the State Water Board to intervene in areas where groundwater users and local agencies are unable or unwilling to sustainably manage their groundwater. State Water Board intervention activities include designating probationary basins, collecting extraction reports, developing interim sustainability plans, and establishing fees to recover cost incurred from intervention. State Intervention is authorized under a limited set of circumstances, and only occurs when local efforts are not successful.

Groundwater Sustainability Agency Formation

After June 30, 2017, the State Water Board can initiate State Intervention activities in portions of high- and medium-priority groundwater basins that are not managed by a groundwater sustainability agency.

Groundwater Sustainability Plan Development and Implementation

After January 31, 2020, the State Water Board can begin the State intervention process in high- or medium-priority groundwater basins in a condition of critical overdraft that have not adopted a sustainability plan, or the plan or its implementation is inadequate.

After January 31, 2022, the State Water Board can begin the State intervention process in all other high- or medium-priority groundwater basins that have not adopted a sustainability plan or the plan or its implementation is inadequate and the basin is in long-term overdraft.

After January 31, 2025, the State Water Board can begin the State intervention process in high- or medium-priority groundwater basins if the sustainability plan or its implementation is inadequate and the State Water Board finds that there are significant depletions of interconnected surface waters.

State Intervention Questions

Questions about State intervention can be sent to groundwater_management@waterboards.ca.gov. State Water Board responses to State intervention questions are available below:

Requesting Entity State Water Board Response
San Luis Obispo County Department of Public Works Question 11/17/2015 12/15/2015
Question about state intervention and alternative plans 02/22/2017

Reporting

SGMA requires a groundwater extraction report be filled with the State Water Board from pumpers who: (1) extract groundwater from a probationary basin 90 days or more from the State Water Board designating the basin as probationary, or (2) extract groundwater on or after July 1, 2017, from areas not covered by a groundwater sustainability agency. A groundwater extractions reporting system is currently under development. Additional information is coming soon.

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