Appellate Court Upholds Historic Water Authority Transfer with Imperial Irrigation District

Short Title
Appellate Court Upholds Historic Water Authority Transfer
Reverses lower court ruling that had invalidated San Diego County Water Authority-Imperial Irrigation District Transfer and Related Agreements

Earlier today, California’s Third District Court of Appeal issued a ruling reversing a lower court ruling that had invalidated the historic 2003 San Diego County Water Authority-Imperial Irrigation District water transfer and a number of other agreements that comprised the broader Colorado River Quantification Settlement Agreement.

“The Water Authority is very pleased with the Appellate Court ruling,” said Maureen A. Stapleton, general manager of the San Diego County Water Authority and the agency’s lead negotiator on the water transfer agreement.  “We were confident we would persevere and prevail."

“Perseverance has been the hallmark of the success of our water transfer with the Imperial Irrigation District, and the broader QSA itself.”

This year, the Water Authority-Imperial Irrigation District water transfer will provide 80,000 acre-feet of highly reliable water supplies to the San Diego region.  Combined with 80,000 acre-feet of supplies conserved from the lining of the All American and Coachella Canals in the Imperial Valley, supplies from the QSA are providing 160,000 acre-feet of water to support San Diego County’s $186 billion economy and the quality of life of 3.1 million people.

“Water supplies from the QSA are the cornerstone of the Water Authority’s long-term water supply diversification program,” said Michael T. Hogan, chair of the Water Authority’s Board of Directors.  “These supplies are vital to the health of our region’s economy and to the quality of life of not only today’s population, but for generations to come.”

By 2021, when the Water Authority-Imperial Irrigation District is fully implemented, the region will receive 280,000 acre-feet of water annually, including the canal lining supplies.  The water transfer agreement has an initial term of 45 years, and the canal lining agreement has a term of 110 years.

For more information on the Water Authority-IID transfer and canal lining supplies, go to www.sdcwa.org/quantification-settlement-agreement

The Appellate Court’s 166-page ruling can be found at www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/documents/C064293.PDF.