MENDOCINO Co., 7/19/19 — The Potter Valley Project, which moves water from the Eel River, south into the Russian River, and is a vital source of water for farms and cities from Potter Valley down to Marin County, is changing hands — and the Farm Bureau will be holding a meeting July 24 to explain exactly where things stand.
The project was built in the early 20th century, and consists of two dams, Lake Pillsbury, a hydro-electric power planet, and a tunnel through a hill north of Potter Valley. It is currently owned and operated by Pacific Gas & Electric, but PG&E has decided not to seek a new license for the project from the Federal Electrical Regulatory Commission (FERC), and so the license was up for grabs. Then a few weeks ago a consortium of governments, agencies and a non-profit, stepped into, and declared their intention to file for the application. The group includes the Mendocino County Water Agency, the Potter Valley Irrigation District, the Russian River Flood Control District, the City of Ukiah, and the Redwood Valley Water District — along with Sonoma's water agency, Humboldt County and the environmental non-profit CalTrout. This group is now in the process of creating some regional water agency, likely a "joint powers authority" or special district, to purchase, license and manage the project. This in turn will require the legislature to take some actions.
All of which is...a lot of moving parts. But thankfully, the Farm Bureau will be holding a special meeting where people can get some clarification and answers about just where this process stands.
The free event will be held July 24 at the Ukiah Valley Conference Center from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Space is limited so registration is required: contact the Mendocino County Farm Bureau at 707-462-6664 or by email at [email protected]
You can also read more about the Potter Valley project in our archive.
Here's the flyer for the event:
And here is our latest article on the subject.