Law Seminars International Presents:

A Comprehensive Conference on SGMA's Next Phase:

Sustainable Groundwater Planning in California

Current legal, technical, business, and regulatory information for preparing GSPs

July 25 & 26, 2019

Sacramento, CA

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Program Overview

Who Should Attend

Attorneys, environmental, real estate and agricultural professionals, corporate managers, governmental officials, Tribal representatives, resource managers, land-use planners, landowners, and water agency board members and managers

Why You Should Attend

This installment in our continuing series on implementation of California's Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) focuses on key current issues for developing Groundwater Sustainability Plans (GSPs). We'll start with the two primary state agencies reporting on implementation progress from the state's perspective. We'll then turn to the first of our substantive panels with a discussion of modeling tools and their role in determining sustainable yields for GSPs.

If your basin is over-subscribed, you'll be particularly interested in the speakers who will be addressing approaches for augmenting water supplies to avoid or reduce cuts in groundwater production. We'll round out the first day with a discussion of how GSPs can address effects of groundwater production on surface streams.

The second day focuses on the potential need for production allocations and the interplay between SGMA and groundwater allocations. We'll conclude with the current best thinking on SGA/GSP finance.

We encourage you to take a careful look at the topics and speaker credentials--they are people you'll want to get to know. Plan to stay for the reception at the end of the first day, where you can speak one-on-one with our conference faculty.

We hope you will join us for this very timely and informative conference.

~ Eric N. Robinson, Esq. of Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard and Wendy Y. Wang, Esq. of Best Best & Krieger, Program Co-Chairs

What You Will Learn

  • ~ State agency updates on GSPs and progress towards SGMA implementation
  • ~ Modeling tools and their role in creating legally sufficient sustainable yield determinations
  • ~ Water transfer options for getting water into the basin
  • ~ New developments in augmentation
  • ~ Water quality issues
  • ~ GSP flexibility to accommodate changes in surface water flow needs
  • ~ Production allocations for over-drafted basins
  • ~ Working with Tribal governments as sovereign nations
  • ~ SGMA and groundwater adjudications
  • ~ GSA/GSP finance options and pathways

What Attendees Have Said About Similar Programs

  • "Good Presentations. The speakers were very knowledgeable."
  • "Lots of good information"
  • "Always useful!"
  • "Grateful to the tribal government panel for coordinating their presentation so that it was efficient, not redundant, not repetitive but instead additive."

Agenda Day 1

8:00 am

Registration Opens

8:30 am

Introduction & Overview

Wendy Y. Wang, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Best Best & Krieger / Los Angeles, CA

Eric N. Robinson, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard / Sacramento, CA

8:45 am

Progress Towards SGMA Implementation and Expectations for GSP Adequacy Reviews by the Department of Water Resources

Where implementation is and isn't on schedule; DWR's top "what next" action items; update on what a GSP needs to contain to avoid intervention by the State Water Resources Control Board, including stakeholder outreach

Erick Soderlund, Esq. , Senior Staff Counsel
California Department of Water Resources / Sacramento, CA

Nicole Kuenzi, Esq. , Senior Staff Counsel
California Water Resources Control Board / Sacramento, CA

10:15 am


10:30 am

Using Computer Models to Determine Sustainable Yield and to Assess Recharge Projects and Other Management Actions for GSPs

What a model is, and the model's role in SGMA implementation; what should matter most to stakeholders; how to review a model and its inputs; workarounds for dealing with the absence of key data

Derrick Williams , Principal Hydrogeologist
Montgomery & Associates, Inc. / Paso Robles, CA

Cross-boundary flows and basin coordination: Flows between hydraulically connected sub-basins; calculating the impact of pumping in the upstream basin on sustainable yield for the downstream basin

Eugene B. (Gus) Yates , Senior Hydrogeologist
Todd Groundwater / Alameda, CA

Factoring surface flow depletion into determination of sustainable yield: How the hydrology works; stream flows as a factor needing incorporation into the analysis

John L. Fio , Principal Hydrogeologist
EKI Environment & Water, Inc. / Davis, CA

12:15 pm

Lunch (on your own)

1:30 pm

Groundwater Augmentation Approaches for GSPs

Key elements of water transfer law; water quality issues under the Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, and California law; the interplay between water quality and water rights; contamination issues ranging from saltiness to Pentachlorophenol (PCP)

Shawn D. Hagerty, Esq.
Best Best & Krieger / San Diego, CA

Water transfer options for getting water into the basin: Complexities and tips for navigating them

Anona L. Dutton, PG, CHG , Vice President
EKI Environment & Water, Inc. / Burlingame, CA

New developments in augmentation through reclaimed or recycled water, aquifer recharge, and stormwater capture projects

Bradley Coffey , Group Manager, Water Resource Management
Metropolitan Water District of So. Cal. / Los Angeles, CA

3:15 pm


3:30 pm

Groundwater / Surface Water Connections: The Need for GSP Flexibility to Address Surface Flow Needs for Fish and Water Users

Conjunctive management of groundwater interconnected with surface streams as a practical approach for achieving resilient and sustainable water supplies

Eric N. Robinson, Esq. , Program Co-Chair, Moderator
Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard / Sacramento, CA

Perspectives on the need for conjunctive management and the need to build flexibility into GSPs in case streamflow baselines need to change to comply with Endangered Species Act, public trust obligations, or other regulations

Andrew H. Sawyer, Esq. , Assistant Chief Counsel
California Water Resources Control Board / Sacramento, CA

Maurice Hall, Ph.D., P.E. , Associate Vice President
Environmental Defense Fund / Sacramento, CA

Sierra Ryan , Water Resource Planner
County of Santa Cruz / Santa Cruz, CA

5:00 pm

Continue the Exchange of Ideas: Reception for Faculty and Attendees

Sponsored by Best Best & Krieger and Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard

Friday, July 26, 2019

8:30 am

Groundwater Production Allocations: An Option for GSPs

Use of groundwater production allocations in groundwater sustainability plans

Daniel M. Dooley , Principal
New Current Water & Land / Sacramento, CA

As some GSAs adopt and implement groundwater production allocation programs, how can they manage the tension between allocations, production rampdowns, and water right claims by competing pumpers?

Russell M. McGlothlin, Esq.
Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck / Santa Barbara, CA

10:00 am


10:15 am

GSA Outreach and GSP Development: Working with Tribal Governments as Sovereign Nations

Federally reserved water rights; consultation requirements; effective consultation; reasons why Tribes may be reluctant to participate in a GSA or share pumping and aquifer management data; confidentiality; practical tips for addressing those concerns

Anecita Agustinez , Tribal Policy Advisor
California Department of Water Resources / Sacramento, CA

John Covington , Reservation Services Administrator
Morongo Band of Mission Indians / Banning, CA

Holly A. Roberson, Esq.
Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard / Sacramento, CA

12:00 pm

Lunch (On Your Own)

1:15 pm

SGMA and Groundwater Adjudications

Given that pumpers will look at an allocation in light of what they would expect to get in an adjudication, and that an adjudication must figure out safe yields and can't slow down SGMA implementation, what are the pros and cons of doing an adjudication?

Wendy Y. Wang, Esq. , Program Co-Chair, Moderator
Best Best & Krieger / Los Angeles, CA

David R. E. Aladjem, Esq.
Downey Brand / Sacramento, CA

Scott K. Kuney, Esq.
Young Wooldridge / Bakersfield, CA

2:45 pm


3:00 pm

GSA/GSP Finance 101: What GSP Developers and Stakeholders Need to Know About Revenue Constraints and Viable Pathways to Pay for GSP Implementation

Propositions 26 and 218 and other constraints: Tips for identifying the optimal funding structures for initial GSP development and GSP implementation activities

Lutfi Kharuf, Esq.
Best Best & Krieger / San Diego, CA

San Buenaventura case and its impacts on GSP funding; creative financing hypotheticals for projects

Constantine C. Baranoff, Esq.
Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard / Sacramento, CA

4:00 pm

Evaluations and Adjourn

Faculty Bios

Eric N. Robinson, Eric N. Robinson, Program Co-Chair, manages the Natural Resources Group at Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard, where he specializes in obtaining and protecting water supplies for public and private clients.

Wendy Y. Wang, Wendy Y. Wang, Program Co-Chair, is Of Counsel at Best Best & Krieger. She works with public and private clients on matters involving water law, SGMA, and the Endangered Species Act. She was a part of the successful team that earned a Daily Journal Top Verdict recognition in 2018 for a jury verdict that favored water agencies in a first-of-its-kind prescriptive groundwater rights trial.

Anecita Agustinez Anecita Agustinez is the Tribal Policy Advisor for the California Department of Water Resources.

David R. E. Aladjem David R. E. Aladjem is a partner at Downey Brand. He represents water districts, cities, counties, and private companies in obtaining, developing, and protecting water rights.

Constantine C. Baranoff Constantine C. Baranoff is a shareholder at Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard. He represents municipal clients in public finance/bond counsel work.

Bradley Coffey Bradley Coffey is Manager of the Water System Operations Group for the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.

John Covington John Covington is Reservation Services Administrator for the Morongo Band of Mission Indians.

Daniel M. Dooley Daniel M. Dooley is a Principal at New Current Water & Land, which provides strategic advice on major water issues.

Anona L. Dutton, PG, CHG, Anona L. Dutton, PG, CHG, is Vice President at EKI Environment and Water, Inc., where she has managed efforts to secure reliable water supplies for water agencies and developers.

John L. Fio John L. Fio is Principal Hydrogeologist at EKI Environment & Water, Inc. His SGMA support tool box includes numerical modeling and chemical, isotopic, and age-dating techniques.

Shawn D. Hagerty Shawn D. Hagerty is a partner at Best Best & Krieger. He works with public agencies with an emphasis on federal and state water quality and water supply laws.

Maurice Hall, Ph.D., P.E. Maurice Hall, Ph.D., P.E. is Associate Vice President of Water for the Ecosystems Program at Environmental Defense Fund.

Lutfi Kharuf, Lutfi Kharuf, Best Best & Krieger, works with clients on compliance with Propositions 218 and 26, rate setting, and issuing bonds.

Nicole Kuenzi Nicole Kuenzi is Senior Staff Counsel for the California Water Resources Control Board, where she advises the Groundwater Management Unit and the Division of Water Rights.

Scott K. Kuney Scott K. Kuney is a partner in the Water Law and Special Districts Department at Young Wooldridge. He specializes in the areas of surface and groundwater rights, and eminent domain litigation.

Russell M. McGlothlin Russell M. McGlothlin is a shareholder at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck. He was highly involved in the development of laws to reform the judicial procedure for adjudicating groundwater basins.

Holly A. Roberson, Holly A. Roberson, Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard, served as Land Use Counsel at the California Governor's Office of Planning and Research (OPR) before joining the firm.

Sierra Ryan Sierra Ryan is Water Resource Planner for the County of Santa Cruz Environmental Health Department.

Andrew H. Sawyer Andrew H. Sawyer is Assistant Chief Counsel for the California Water Resources Control Board. He manages activities involving the Board's water rights and drinking water programs.

Erick Soderlund Erick Soderlund is Senior Staff Counsel at the California Department of Water Resources. He formerly served as Assistant District Counsel for the Santa Clara Valley Water District.

Derrick Williams Derrick Williams is a Principal Hydrogeologist for Montgomery & Associates, Inc. He helped shape the California Statewide Groundwater Elevation Monitoring Program (CASGEM).

Eugene B. (Gus) Yates Eugene B. (Gus) Yates is a Senior Hydrogeologist at Todd Groundwater. He is an acknowledged expert in basin yield analysis, groundwater modeling, quantification of groundwater budgets, and evaluation of groundwater flow and quality.

Continuing Education Credits

Live credits: Law Seminars International is a State Bar of California approved MCLE provider. This program qualifies for 12.5 California MCLE credits, 12.25 AICP planner credits, and 12.25 ABCEP environmental professional credits. Upon request, we will help you apply for CLE credits in other states and other types of credits.


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Sutter Square Galleria

2901 K St in Sacramento, CA 95816

The conference will be held at the Sutter Square Galleria at 2901 K St in Sacramento, CA 95816. Lodging is available at a number of nearby hotels.
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