The DBS&A team was recently selected to prepare Groundwater Sustainability Plans (GSPs) for the Fillmore and Piru basins in Ventura County, California. Under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA), the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) categorizes both Fillmore and Piru Basins as high priority due to the area’s high dependence upon groundwater for municipal, domestic, agricultural, and environmental needs. The area also serves as habitat for several endangered and threatened species. Our team, which includes the Consensus and Collaboration Program (CCP) at Sacramento State and Stillwater Sciences (SWS), will work with the Fillmore and Piru Basins Groundwater Sustainability Agency (FPBGSA) to address the needs of these beneficial uses and users of groundwater. The Agency is led by a board of directors that includes representation from the County of Ventura, City of Fillmore, United Water Conservation District, Fillmore Basin Pumpers Association, Piru Basin Pumpers Association, and Santa Clara River Environmental Groundwater Committee.

The team of DBS&A, CCP, and SWS is also working to prepare a GSP for the Owens Valley Groundwater Basin in Inyo and Mono Counties, California. We provide broad expertise in the issues pertinent to groundwater sustainability planning, including:

  • Groundwater resource assessments and safe yield evaluations
  • Conjunctive use programs
  • Water supply development
  • Water system engineering
  • Water rights evaluations
  • Agricultural water conservation
  • Watershed management
  • Database management systems
  • Stakeholder participation
  • Community planning
  • Ecosystem characterizations
  • Groundwater dependent ecosystems
  • Decision support systems

Applying Decision Analysis Tools

DBS&A will apply Decision Analysis Tools for a systematic approach within the stakeholder engagement process. Decision Analysis will help the FPBGSA reach defensible decisions that have widespread acceptance among stakeholders and save time and money. Our expertise in applying quantitative decision analysis software will enable the agency and its stakeholders to logically evaluate, compare, and rank alternative complex water management strategies that balance interrelated environmental, economic, and technical objectives, as well as community values, to achieve feasible outcomes and public acceptance. These activities will culminate in the submittal of the GSP to the DWR by January 31, 2022.

GSP Expertise

Tony Morgan, P.G., C.HG., DBS&A’s Vice President and Principal Hydrogeologist, is leading our FPBGSA team as Project Manager. Mr. Morgan has expertise in SGMA compliance, including formation of GSAs, creation of GSPs, and conducting groundwater basin studies and regional conjunctive use programs. He joins DBS&A’s hydrogeologists and modelers who support water agencies working toward compliance with SGMA, by developing and providing expert review of groundwater budgets and numerical models, estimating sustainable yields, and implementing groundwater monitoring programs and other groundwater management strategies.