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Spring 2013

Planning Provides Local Say In Flood Management

A locally-directed planning process is giving landowners a long-awaited opportunity to share their knowledge about challenges related to potential flooding, and ideas for programs and projects to address them.

The Family Water Alliance is partnering with dozens of organizations and local public agencies serving landowners in the Mid and Upper Sacramento River Region (Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Lake, Sutter, Tehama and Yolo Counties) to lead the development of a flood management plan that outlines a local vision for long-term flood risk reduction. Although locally driven, the plan is being fully paid for by the state through Prop 1E bond funds, approved by voters in 2006. There are six total planning areas covering the Sacramento and San Joaquin River regions.

The plan, once completed, will be considered by the state in a 2017 update to the Central Valley Flood Protection Plan. That heavily debated plan, which was adopted by the Central Valley Flood Protection Board in 2012, generally identified integrated flood management actions for the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valleys. The local planning process provides opportunities to add more specificity by identifying current flood risk conditions, flood protections problems and opportunities, potential projects and priorities, and needs for local, state and federal funding. The local plan is to be completed by mid-2015.

This is a great opportunity for our local communities to have a voice to identify ways to improve flood management.  Many people throughout the community have first hand knowledge of historic flooding events; that information is critical to addressing the opportunities and challenges of reducing flood risk in California and our region.   

This type of local planning effort has never been funded by the state.  This is an exciting opportunity to allow the locals to put forward ideas that will have a direct impact on the future of our communities.  Recent state and federal laws have made dramatic changes to flood management in California and the National Flood Insurance Program.  This local plan could not have come at a more critical time as the entire Central Valley is faced with mounting regulations for flood prone areas. 

Kickoff meetings were held on April 10 and 11 in Colusa and Chico, respectively, to provide information on the purpose of the planning process and outline opportunities for involvement. Landowners are encouraged to visit the program website ( for meeting announcements, and to review documents and register for email updates. Those with questions may call the program hotline at (530) 809-9317.

Participating groups include:

  • Landowners
  • RD s 108, 70, 225, 521, 787, 1500, 1660, 2047, and 2106
  • LDs 1, 2, and 3
  • Counties of Butte, Glenn, Tehama, Yolo, Colusa, Lake, and Sutter
  • Cities of Colusa and Chico
  • Family Water Alliance
  • Sacramento River Westside Levee District
  • Tehama County Flood Control & Water Conservation District
  • Lake County Watershed Protection District
  • Yolo County Service Area 6
  • Tribes


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