Skip to main content

Reporting of High-Capacity Inactive Wells

Reporting of High-Capacity Inactive Wells

The California Department of Water Resources has directed all groundwater districts to develop a sustainability plan over the next few years that addresses groundwater levels, groundwater quality, surface water interaction and more.  In an effort to meet the mandates of the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA), the Sierra Valley Groundwater Management District (SVGMD) Board of Directors has been working on ordinances and policies that will satisfy the requirements of the law.

The SVGMD is responsible for measuring actual and potential groundwater extraction by municipal and agricultural high-capacity wells.  In pursuit of that goal, the Board has identified a need to create a report describing the number of high-capacity inactive wells and the location of those wells to assist in the calculation of groundwater extraction capabilities in the Sierra Valley Groundwater Basin.

The Board of Directors has adopted an ordinance requiring registration of all high-capacity inactive wells. The District will plot the GPS location and record your estimate of its pumping capacity.  A high-capacity inactive well is defined in Ordinance 18-01 per section 3(a) and section 4(a) “as those capable of pumping 100 gallons per minute or more or constructed with casings larger than a seven (7) inch outside diameter (OD), and unmetered.”   You may view the ordinance in its entirety here:

Ordinance 18-01 - Adopting Requirements Pertaining to New Water Well PermitsOrdinance 18-01 Exhibit A (map)

Failure to register all high-capacity inactive wells on your property within the District may result in the loss of your ability to activate an inactive well for future use. 

Inactive wells must be registered with the SVGMD by July 1, 2018. 

Please contact the SVGMD clerk of the board if you have any questions.  To register an inactive high-capacity well, please fill out the attached form and return it to the SVGMD by July 1, 2018. 

Inactive High-Capacity Well Inventory Form


SVGMD P.O Box 88 Chilcoot, CA 96105

(530) 428-5002