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Failing Wells Relief

Sacramento, CA — The state has set aside millions to help those with failing wells, which could help pay for a Jamestown project.

This week, the State Water Resources Control Board has allocated $5 million in funds to help residents on private wells and small water systems facing an immediate drought-related water shortage or outage. Nonprofit organizations will dole out the funds, which will pay for interim and permanent solutions that include new wells, well rehabilitation, and consolidation into new or existing public water systems. Tuolumne County Office of Emergency Services (OES) Coordinator Tracie Riggs states the Jamestown Water Main Extension Project, involving residents along Quartz Street and the Dutch Mine Road area, falls right in line with those requirements. She explains, “The project involves 18 to 25 homes, 95% of which are experiencing well failure. We are working with Tuolumne Utilities District to extend one of their water mains and permanently connect those residents. We have put in an email [to the water board], and are asking how that funding might fit in with this project and how we might be able to move it forward.”

Riggs notes that in the past the water board funds have been capped at $500,000 for individual projects. The Jamestown project is expected to cost roughly one million dollars so the county’s OES department has already been securing additional funding. However, Riggs is hopeful stating, “They [state water board] like to see that you are not exceeding $25,000 per home cost. By separating out the cost that each of these funding sources will provide, we believe that we now meet that threshold or we are below it.”

Riggs is leaving no stone unturned in the attempt to secure some of these funds. She has also already spoken to a representative of the California Department of Water Resources to try to get more details on the requirements and application information. The state has given no deadline for submissions or a time frame for awarding of the money.