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Inland Empire Water Agencies to Start Construction This Summer on a Stormwater Capture Project

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SAN BERNARDINO, Calif., July 3, 2017 — San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District, and its partner Western Municipal Water District, are taking an important step toward increasing their ability to capture more stormwater to refill a local groundwater basin.

The first phase of the project, to begin this summer, involves the installation of an 8-foot diameter pipeline and construction of a sedimentation basin just downstream from the Seven Oaks Dam.

The sedimentation basin provides a place for silt and sand to settle out of the water, which results in cleaner water that can be transported throughout the district’s service area. The cleaner water also percolates faster into the local groundwater basin.

“This project is an important milestone for us because it’s our first major water project since the State Water Resources Control Board granted us additional Santa Ana River water rights in 2010,” said Bob Tincher, Valley District’s manager of water resources. “This project will help us capture more stormwater before it flows to the ocean.”

Tincher said the new pipeline will be connected to existing pipeline facilities so that captured Santa Ana River water could be delivered to other areas within the the Valley District service area. “The sedimentation basin is upstream from our new 8-foot diameter pipeline to help prevent sand and silt from getting into the line,” he said.

Tincher said Valley District has obtained the necessary environmental permits for the project to move forward. He said the district was originally planning to build the sedimentation basin in a neighboring location, but electrical transmission lines that deliver electricity to Los Angeles were in the way. “We concluded it would be cheaper and faster for us to relocate the basin than the power lines,” he said.

Valley District and Western Municipal Water District obtained additional Santa Ana River water rights from the State Regional Water Quality Control Board in 2010 after a 19-year quest to obtain such rights.

The new water will be divided between Valley District and Western Municipal Water District based upon a court judgment from 1969. Valley District will receive 72 percent of the new water rights, while Western will have a right to 28 percent of the new water rights. The water agencies also share proportionally in the cost of improvements to capture and recharge facilities on a proportional basis. For more information, please visit


Bob Tincher
San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District
(909) 387-9215

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