Page 7 - SB_History
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PREFACE Plunge pool downstream from Seven
Oaks Dam.
As San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District celebrates its 60th anniver- Photo courtesy of Western Municipal
sary, California is in the third year of one of its worst droughts in history. Water District
At the time of this writing, 82 percent of California was experiencing extreme
drought conditions, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National The Santa Ana River, which flows
Drought Mitigation Center. from the San Bernardino Mountains
The state Department of Water Resources was only able to deliver only 5 per- westward to the Pacific Ocean, is
cent of the water that Valley District and other water importers have contracted the largest river system in Southern
to receive through the State Water Project, which carries water from Northern California. It is also one of the most
California to the most densely populated areas of Southern California. litigated.
Thirteen water agencies serving more than 700,000 western San Bernardino Photo courtesy of Jeff Crider
County residents and businesses in Yucaipa, Redlands, Loma Linda, Highland,
Mentone, San Bernardino, Colton, Grand Terrace, Bloomington and Rialto each
depend on Valley District for anywhere from 15 to nearly 40 percent of their
respective water needs.
In fact, the growth and developement that has taken place in the San Bernardino
Valley since the early 1980s would not have been possible without imported water.
This brings up some interesting questions. Why do cities across the San Ber-
nardino Valley depend on Valley District for so much of their water? Why do
Valley District and its customers depend on imported water from Northern Cal-
ifornia? Moreover, what has Valley District done to ensure that local residents
and businesses will always have the water they need? Has Valley District tried to
develop other local water supplies or water banking strategies?
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