About the Santa Margarita Development Committee

Under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act of 2014, overdrafted groundwater basins need to be sustainably managed by a Groundwater Sustainability Agency (GSA) through the development of a Groundwater Sustainability Plan (GSP). The GSP must be completed by 2020, and the basin must reach sustainability by 2040.
Under development is the Santa Margarita Groundwater Agency (SMGA), a three-member agency comprised of the Scotts Valley Water District, San Lorenzo Valley Water District and the County of Santa Cruz, which will oversee the groundwater management activities of the Santa Margarita Basin Area in Santa Cruz County, California. The Board of Directors of the SMGA includes two Board members from each of the water districts, one from the County, one from the City of Scotts Valley, one from the City of Santa Cruz, one from the Mount Hermon Association Community Water System and two private well owner representatives.
Once a Joint Powers Agreement (JPA) is completed in early 2017, the SMGA will apply to the state Department of Water Resources to become the GSA for the Basin.

Key Basin Management Goals

  • Goal 1: Ensure water supply reliability for current and future beneficial uses
  • Goal 2: Maintain water quality to meet current and future beneficial uses
  • Goal 3: Prevent adverse environmental impacts
These goals will be re-evaluated as the SMGA embarks on developing its Groundwater Sustainability Plan.

Current Focus

The SMGA has been working and focusing on:
  • Formation of a Groundwater Sustainability Agency (GSA) – In progress
  • Request Basin Boundary Revision to DWR – Complete
  • Develop Groundwater Model – In progress
  • Developing a Work Plan to prepare a Groundwater Sustainability Plan
  • Public Outreach and Education – Ongoing
  • Develop the Groundwater Sustainability Plan