TID will discuss wastewater

Bee Staff ReportsFebruary 16, 2014 

The board of the Turlock Irrigation District on Tuesday will talk about a possible purchase of highly treated wastewater from the city of Turlock.

Directors will consider appointing General Manager Casey Hashimoto as the district’s negotiator with the city.

Last month, the City Council considered selling wastewater to the Del Puerto Water District, based in Patterson, to help it through the drought. The council delayed a vote after TID officials said they had been led to believe that they could buy the same water.

The matter will be discussed a week before the TID board is scheduled to consider the 2014 allotment of the main supply from the Tuolumne River. It is expected to fall well short of the need because of a third year of drought and the drawdown of Don Pedro Reservoir.

The city of Turlock has upgraded its sewage treatment system to the point at which the water can be used on cropland, though not for drinking.

The five-year Del Puerto sale would start at 11,000 acre-feet in the first year and reach 13,000 by the fifth. The district would pay the city $75 per acre-foot.

The water would make up for a small part of the severe cutbacks Del Puerto has faced from the federal Central Valley Project because of drought and fish protections.

The sale would be an interim step toward a permanent system that could provide Del Puerto with 32,900 acre-feet of wastewater a year in a partnership with Stanislaus County and the cities of Turlock, Modesto and Ceres.

Del Puerto serves about 45,000 acres of farmland along Interstate 5 between Vernalis and Santa Nella.

TID seeks the wastewater for some of the western portions of its 150,000 or so acres of irrigated land.

The board will meet at 9 a.m. Tuesday at the district office, 333 E. Canal Drive, Turlock.

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