As the Tri-Valley region’s water wholesaler, we work with our
water retailers to ensure that over a quarter of a million
people in eastern Alameda County are taken care of. We work
collaboratively with policymakers and legislators to make sure we
can continue providing exceptional service delivery to our
What Puts Our Water Supply at Risk?
The Tri-Valley is heavily reliant on imported water through
California’s State Water Project, which helps to buffer the
impacts of the historic over-pumping of the local groundwater
basin from the early to mid-1900s. Along with importing
approximately 80% of the water supply, managing the groundwater
storage and water quality increases the cost of delivering
our water and leaves us vulnerable to long-term reliability
Challenges that put our communities at risk for water shortages
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are emerging concerns
as our Agency relies on groundwater during drought periods. Two
projects have been approved to alleviate PFAS contamination in
groundwater at local wells, however this treatment is expensive
and ongoing investment in our treatment system is needed to
address this important concern.
The State Water Project infrastructure, which we depend on for
most of our water supply, is aging and at risk of failure.
Investing in this infrastructure will ensure it continues
delivering water to our community. The State Water Project
estimates that contractors, such as Zone 7, will have to share in
the costs to update these facilities.
The changing climate is impacting California’s water resources,
causing prolonged droughts or extreme weather patterns, such
as atmospheric weather patterns.
How does flooding impact our community?
Atmospheric Rivers bring much-needed rainfall, but also can cause
significant channel damage and flooding.
Flood Channel Maintenance:
Ongoing maintenance of our 37 miles of flood channels is
vital to our community. Ensuring a clear path for stormwater
during rainy seasons protects our homes and business from
Damage to Infrastructure:
In 2017, and in the most recent storms in 2022 and 2023, storm
damage resulted in millions of dollars in damage. The Zone 7 team
requires multiple years to repair the hundreds of bank slides
that occur during heavy rains. Funding for emergency repairs is
dependent on many factors and requires diligent staff effort to
identify and secure grants to supplement existing revenues.
Keeping Our Community’s Water and Flood Protection Affordable and
Zone 7 strives to provide Alameda County with reliable,
high-quality water and effective flood protection. We cannot meet
this goal without local, regional, state, and Federal
Examples of how policymakers can help:
Provide legislative and funding support for our long-term
water supply and storage projects currently underway, including
the Sites Reservoir project, Los Vaqueros Reservoir Expansion
Project, and Delta Conveyance project. Other water supplies under
consideration include the Bay Area Regional Desalination project
and the Tri-Valley Potable Reuse project.
Support and funding for the construction and maintenance of
PFAS treatment projects to keep water safe and critical
production wells online. Zone 7 needs legislative partners to
help identify Federal and State funding or other legislative
solutions to support projects critical to water reliability and
flood protection for the Tri-Valley.
Funding to support the Federal Flood Subventions programs,
which is critical to continuing those flood
channels included in U.S. Army Corps of Engineers programs.
Zone 7 Water Legislative Framework
In March of 2023, the Zone 7 Board of Directors adopted a revised
legislative framework to help guide our work in alignment of our
Strategic Plan, and provide a roadmap to our legislative
committee and staff. Highlights of our framework are outlined
Our guiding principles represent the Agency’s adopted policies
and plans and frames the Agency’s legislative interests with
respect to the Agency’s mission, vision, and values. Recurring
planning efforts for which legislative action may be monitored
for impacts to the Agency include updates to capital improvement
plans, water supply plans (i.e., Urban Water Management Plan,
Groundwater Sustainability Plan, Water Supply Evaluation), flood
management plans, and fiscal plans and budgets.