The San Joaquin River Restoration Reimbursable Authority Program supports the implementation of a court settlement to restore flows and naturally-reproducing and self-sustaining populations of salmon to the San Joaquin River between Friant Dam and the Merced River. The bond funds will be used to carry out the settlement activities through a program that will be administered by the Department of Water Resources, Division of Local Assistance, San Joaquin District.
To ensure the settlement’s success, the Department of Water Resources entered into a Memorandum of Understanding between the United States Department of the Interior, United Stated Department of Commerce, Natural Resources Defense Council, Friant Water Users Authority, California Resources Agency, California Department of Fish and Game, and the California Environmental Protection Agency to pledge their cooperation and financial resources of the State. DWR will also be a member of the Technical Advisory Committee and the five-agency Program Management Team to ensure that use of the bond funds is coordinated and fully supports the successful restoration of the San Joaquin River.
The settling parties have identified the actions and highest priority projects necessary to reach the restoration goals as follows:
P Expansion of channel capacity
P Identifying and making levee improvements
P Making modifications to provide fish passage through or around certain structures in the river channel
In addition to the bond funds, this settlement will be supported by environmental contributions from farmers and cities served by Friant Dam, and federal contributions.
When funding criteria for potential projects under this program is developed, it will be posted on the California Department of Water Resources website.
Projects selected for funding under the San Joaquin River Restoration Program are developed and approved by a five agency Program Management Team. The State agencies participating in the program (DFG and DWR) are compelled by a Federal Court Settlement Agreement and attendant State-Federal MOU to cooperate in providing specific features of the restoration program, as listed in paragraph 10 of the Settlement Agreement. The timetable for the completion of these features is based on the five-agency decisions concerning program overall roll-out, as defined in a Program Management Plan, approved by the Agency Directors and reviewed by the Federal Court. The Resources Secretary interfaces with the Secretary of the Interior to assure that the program elements are completed on the schedule agreed in the Settlement.
Contracting entities will be required meet the standard procedures of the State DGS, and contracted deliverables will also be accountable to the above five-agency Program Management Team. The contracting agencies will withholds up to ten percent of each payment request to be released upon project completion.
All contracted construction or fishery management projects funded via the San Joaquin River Restoration Program receive a close-out analysis by the five agency Program Management Team and peer review by a Technical Advisory Committee panel, prior to releasing final invoice payments and final funding release/close-out. This will include close out visits to all construction contract sites to assure proper completion. The purpose of the close-out field visit is to ensure all project components were completed according to contract conditions, including project scope and timetable. All grantees must comply with all current laws and regulations which apply to the project and submit documents summarizing total project costs and all additional funding sources.