Project water flows through Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta channels until it reaches the Harvey O. Banks Pumping Plant at Clifton Court Forebay just south of Stockton, California. Photo by DWR

Groups ask State Water Board for more time to file protests on Delta Conveyance Project petition for change in point of diversion

On February 22, 2024, the State Water Resources Control Board received a Petition for Change from the Department of Water Resources to add two new points of diversion and rediversion to the water right permits associated with the State Water Project.  Protests against the change petition must be filed by April 29, 2024, with a copy provided to the petitioner. Details regarding how to submit a protest can be found in the full-length version of this notice available at:

Last week, several groups requested an extension of the deadline.

The Delta Tribal Environmental Coalition, the California Indian Environmental Alliance, San Francisco Baykeeper, The Bay Institute, Friends of the River, California Sportfishing Protection Alliance, Golden State Salmon Alliance, Institute for Fisheries’ Resources, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations, Save California Salmon, AquAlliance, Sierra Club California, and Center for Biological Diversity say an extension is needed to ensure a sufficiently resourced, fair, and factually and legally relevant adjudication process.

“Good cause exists to support that a significant extension of time in this matter is appropriate for practical reasons—haste is neither necessary nor feasible; legal reasons—the regulatory rules and operational restrictions regarding use of the Tunnel remain in flux; and for equity reasons—to ensure adequate and fair opportunities for public participation, especially by Tribes, BIPOC communities, environmental justice organizations, and public interest non-profits,” the letter states.

The groups request that the Board delay the protest deadline until the adjudication of Sites Reservoir water rights application, and the EPA approves both phases of the Bay Delta Water Quality Control Plan after Board adoption.  Or, alternatively, set a deadline 120 days after the Board’s adoption of the Sacramento Delta update to the Bay Delta Water Quality Control Plan.  Or, at least extend the deadline 270 days.

In a second letter submitted by attorney Osha Meserve, she adds, “The SWRCB’s determination (just 7 days after submittal of DWR’s application) that the application was complete and ready to notice was a truncated and flawed process that failed to comport with laws and regulations pertaining to the SWRCB’s processing of water rights petitions.”

She concluded by noting, “although SWRCB may have different hearing teams for different water rights matters, the rest of us do not. It is important as a matter of equity and to allow the full participation of all affected stakeholders, that the SWRCB avoid overlapping deadlines for important proceedings involving the Delta Watershed.”

Read the letters below:

2024-03-26 DCP Protest Extension
2024-03-29 Meserve Protest Extension

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