Monterey Plus Agreement

Harvey O. Banks Pumping Plant, a State Water Project facility.

 
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Photo courtesy of California Department of Water Resources.

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The parties to the original Monterey Agreement litigation eventually settled PCL v. DWR in 2003.

Parties to the new "Monterey Plus" Agreement included plaintiffs Planning and Conservation League, Citizens Planning Association of Santa Barbara County, and Plumas County Flood Control and Water Conservation District (a state water contractor); and the California Department of Water Resources, 27 state water contractors (including the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California and Kern County Water Agency, the largest), and two non-water contractors, Kern Water Bank Authority and Central Coast Water Authority.

The Monterey Plus Agreement retains the basic principles of the Monterey Agreement (as well as its contract amendments). It also requres  the Department to pay out $5.5 million in attorneys fees and settlement funding and promising to prepare a “Monterey Plus” environmental impact report that would evaluate the Monterey amendment principles fully.

Under the Monterey Plus Agreement, language about “entitlements” to water in the State Water Project contracts was replaced by reference to “Table A Amounts” with notes under each contract's Table A stating that amounts shown in the contracts may not be fully delivered.

DWR also agreed to prepare biennial reports on State Water Project supply reliability. Under this “Monterey Plus” agreement, the Department and its water contractors could operate the State Water Project according to the Monterey Amendments and new amendments pending completion of the new Monterey Plus Environmental Impact Report. These were completed and the EIR certified in February 2010 and formally approved by DWR in May.