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TUD Seeks More Input On Water Solutions

Sonora, CA — Tuolumne Utilities District (TUD) hopes customers who have not yet come out will flock to the third and final community water forum it will hold Thursday.

As previously reported, TUD set up the series of public meetings to share a range of possible long-term solutions to ongoing water issues and gather customers’ feedback and preferences among the possible alternatives. The potential solutions came out of a series of Community Water Council Meetings, held this past spring, that involved utilities and other public officials as well as environmental groups and other stakeholders.

Tomorrow’s forum will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. at Tuolumne Veterans Memorial Hall (18375 Fir St., Tuolumne). TUD officials encourage those who have not already weighed in at one of the forums and who cannot make the Tuolumne meeting to review online and vote on the recommendations being made by clicking here. Feedback will be taken via the link through Friday, June 26.

Among the queries on the 16-question survey are two open response items. Participants are also requested to rate potential water solutions on a one-to-five scale. Broad overall solutions range from increasing efficiency of the water ditch system and constructing new on or off-stream storage, to changing customers’ water use patterns and expectations, and/or collaborating with other nearby water agencies to acquire water rights.

Reservoir-specific solutions include a review of all reservoirs to increase capacity, like what is being done at Phoenix Lake reservoir or enlarging Lyons Reservoir to a maximum capacity of 50,000 acre-feet.

Among other long-term alternatives that TUD is asking customers to weigh in on are the possibility of pursuing a 1962 agreement with Tri-Dam which might support importing flood waters from Middle Fork Stanislaus River to the South Fork watershed; and/or purchasing and operating Phoenix Power House and Lyons Dam if the purchase includes water and storage rights at Pinecrest.