Wednesday, July 23, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Main Ditch pipe plan advances

By
From page A1 | March 31, 2014 |

Preliminary studies to pipe the Main Ditch that connects Forebay to Reservoir 1 Water Treatment Plant have been completed, but the lion’s share of studies remain.

An update on the project was presented to the El Dorado Irrigation District Board of Directors on March 24. Originally pegged for construction in 2018, it likely will be moved up to take advantage of state drought project funding.

The studies completed on the three-mile-long dirt ditch include an archeological inventory and survey, a botany study of wetland delineation, mapping of wells and septic systems near the Main Ditch and survey work on the actual gradient. Additionally, a red-legged frog assessment was done. There are 28 septic systems uphill from the Main Ditch.

An on-call engineer has been contracted to prepare a basis of design report that will include a hydraulic analysis, alternative alignment analyses, design criteria and estimated construction costs. That basis of design report is expected to be completed in three months, according to a report by EID engineer Bob Rice.

Some time-consuming actions remain for future board action, including environmental documents, right-of-way research and acquisition if a shorter route is chosen, public outreach and design detailed enough to go to bid for construction.

In 2012 the El Dorado County Water agency granted EID $40,000 and last year it granted $192,000 to advance the studies. This year on Jan. 13 the board agreed to submit a grant application to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation for $1 million. If that is awarded the board would have to agree to match the $1 million with $1 million of its own money.

The value of piping the Main Ditch is four-fold:

1. It would save 1,200-1,300 acre-feet of water it loses each year through seepage and evaporation.
2. It would eliminate a vast majority of the 300,000 pounds of dirt and trash that the water treatment plant must eliminate and later dispose of.
3. It would eliminate fecal coliform that the ditch picks up from neighboring septic leach fields as well as oily road runoff.
4. The water saved could be transferred to El Dorado Hills to save on pumping costs from Folsom Lake or it could be used to generate an extra $300,000 in hydroelectric income.

In response to a question from Director Greg Prada, Water-Hydro Engineering Manager Cindy Megerdigian said the project would take two construction seasons to complete and thus could be constructed in two phases. The district will hear back from USBR in about two months regarding the grant, she said.

Construction is estimated to cost $3.87 million, though the engineering consultant’s basis of design will refine that figure. Total expense of the project ranges up to $5.1 million, Rice said.

The estimate of water loss from the ditch was made by Jones & Stokes in 1977. That year the state Department of Health wrote a letter saying there were compelling public health reasons for piping the ditch. The ditch conveys the district’s key water right of 15,080 acre-feet of water to the treatment plant.

“This section of our delivery system is an embarrassment, a huge embarrassment, a huge leak,” said Doug Leisz, president of Citizens for Water. “It is something that is an immediate concern.”

“There’s a lot of offset here,” said Director Dale Coco, noting that the solids coming into the water treatment plant add a lot of expense. “If we can prevent that, it decreases the cost of operations. Out third highest cost of operations is chemicals and supplies. It’s the only way to keep rates down.”

Coco also pointed out the $300,000 in annual power revenue that could be gained from eliminated ditch  water losses.

“Sometimes you have to spend money to save money,” Coco said.

Comments

comments

Michael Raffety

.

News

 
Heard over the back fence: Attorney to warn about scams

By Bob Billingsley | From Page: B1

Road zone of benefit protester reaches dead end

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Six file for Dist. 2

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1

District 2 candidates forum Aug. 14

By News Release | From Page: B1

 
EID ditch customers get relief

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A1

Veterans receive wildland fire training

By News Release | From Page: B1

 
Market data open for local biz

By Ross Branch | From Page: B1

Volunteers clean up national forest

By News Release | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
.

Opinion

Russian metastasis

By Mountain Democrat | From Page: A4

 
The Democratic-Chronicles: Not invented here

By Gene Altshuler | From Page: A4

My turn: Special interests at EID

By Special to the Democrat | From Page: A4

 
.

Letters

DA hogging Main St. parking

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

 
CAO and staff hiring friends

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

Altshuler’s hypocrisy

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

 
Small Farm compromise

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

EID and Dale Coco

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

 
.

Sports

Roundup: July 22, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

 
Dolphins ring up another title

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Sharks defeat Loomis Basin in season finale

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Celebrity golf at Tahoe

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Dodgeball: Not the national pastime but …

By Shane Theodore | From Page: A7 | Gallery

 
.

Prospecting

At a glance: Comets to meteors

By Mimi Escabar | From Page: B2

 
Taste the best at the State Fair

By Democrat Staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Amador Fair honors cowboys

By Amador County Fair | From Page: B3

 
Tractor Supply Store recognized

By Uc Cooperative | From Page: B3

 
Arbor Day book helps to identify trees

By Arbor Day | From Page: B4

Learn about lavender and its many benefits

By Christian Women's Connection | From Page: B4

 
Builders’ Exchange honors scholars

By El Dorado Builders' Exchange | From Page: B5

 
En garde at Silver Screen Classic

By Auburn Silver Screen | From Page: B5

Lee’s Feed appreciates customers

By Democrat Staff | From Page: B5

 
My Time meeting in August

By Senior Day | From Page: B5

.

Essentials

Weather stats 7-22-14

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2

 
Crime Log: July 8-10

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2

.

Obituaries

Arthur J. Funston

By Contributor | From Page: A2

 
Walter Vali

By Contributor | From Page: A2

Jean Lachelle Taylor

By Contributor | From Page: A2

 
.

Real Estate

.

Comics

Horoscope, Thursday, July 24, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Horoscope, Wednesday, July 23, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Working It Out

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
TV Listings

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Shoe

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Sudoku

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Rubes

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
New York Times Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Flying McCoys

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Speed Bump

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Tundra

By Contributor | From Page: A8