Tribal and Subsistence Fishing Beneficial Uses

On May 2, 2017, the State Water Resources Control Board adopted Resolution 2017-0027, which approved the "Tribal and Subsistence Fishing Beneficial Uses and Mercury Provisions”. Resolution 2017-0027 established new beneficial use definitions for use by the State and Regional Water Boards that include Tribal Tradition and Culture (CUL), Tribal Subsistence Fishing (T-SUB) and Subsistence (SUB) beneficial uses. These beneficial uses are meant to protect water quality in waterbodies where activities specific to Native American culture and subsistence fishing occur, including practices not covered by existing beneficial uses. For Tribal Beneficial Uses (TBUs) to be memorialized in a region and for waterbodies to be protected, a Regional Water Board needs to complete one or more Basin Plan Amendment processes to incorporate the definitions for the TBUs into the region’s Basin Plan and to designate waterbodies with the TBUs.

General information regarding Tribal Beneficial Uses is available on the State Water Board Tribal Affairs website.

Information about the Lahontan Water Board's Tribal Beneficial Uses effort is available in a Fact Sheet

Mono Basin Tribal Beneficial Uses Designation Project

The Lahontan Water Board is proposing to amend the Water Quality Control Plan for the Lahontan Region to designate Tribal Beneficial Uses to waterbodies in the Mono Basin, which is located near the community of Lee Vining in Mono County.

The Board will hold a public hearing on April 18, 2024 in Barstow, California. No action by the Lahontan Water Board will be taken at the public hearing, which is solely to receive public comment on the draft Staff Report, which includes the Substitute Environmental Documentation (SED) required by the California Environmental Quality Act, and the Draft Basin Plan Amendment

The draft SED and draft Basin Plan Amendment will be posted on this website no later than 30 days prior to the public hearing. The Notice of Public Hearing below includes the details for how to submit written comments on the draft documents, which must be submitted by April 30, 2024.

Details for how to participate at the April 18, 2024 public hearing can be found on the Lahontan website. You do not need to create a Zoom account to join the meeting. To request to speak at the public hearing, see the website below for how to register for the Zoom meeting and to receive the meeting password:

In order to give everyone an opportunity to be heard, a time limit for oral comments may be imposed on any agenda item and are generally limited to five (5) minutes. Any person wishing to make a longer presentation should request an extension at least ten (10) days prior to the meeting at:

Anyone wishing to present a Microsoft PowerPoint® presentation during the meeting, must provide the presentation to Katrina Fleshman, Executive Assistant at least ten (10) working days prior to the meeting at:

Project Announcements and Documents

Tribal Cultural, Tribal Subsistence Fishing and Subsistence Fishing Beneficial Uses Definitions Basin Plan Amendment

The Lahontan Water Board completed a Basin Plan Amendment process to add the definitions for the Tribal Beneficial Uses to the Water Quality Control Plan for the Lahontan Region. Documents related to this action are provided below.

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