Following a series of public committee and board meetings, the Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency adopted its biennial budget for fiscal years 2023/24 and 2024/25 in May. Once the numerical information and key elements of the budget were approved, agency staff developed a fully formatted publication, which is now available for viewing by the public online.
This budget supports SCV Water’s mission to provide responsible water stewardship to ensure the SCV has reliable supplies of high-quality water at a reasonable cost, the agency said in a news release.
With a look toward future resiliency needs and sustainability opportunities, the budget aligns with the agency’s strategic plan and reflects planned projects and initiatives to meet SCV Water’s mission while addressing current and future challenges, the release said.
“As we’ve seen over the past few years, both natural and man-made events continue to pose challenges for water agencies,” board President Gary Martin said in the release. “This budget focuses on the projects and programs that will strengthen SCV Water’s supply portfolio, lead to more sustainable practices and ensure customers receive high-quality water.”
The release cited key initiatives and activities under this budget including:
- Conservation Long-term Framework. By state mandate (Assembly Bill 1668 and Senate Bill 606), SCV Water will invest more than $2.9 million in both budget years to update the Sustainable Water Use Strategic Plan, implement conservation programs and complete supplemental research and evaluation. Additionally, the Water Shortage Contingency Plan is anticipated to be updated in FY 2024/25.
- Water Resiliency Initiative. SCV Water will invest $2.2 million in projects that will expand the agency’s knowledge, develop analytical tools and prepare studies to inform how the agency invests in water supply programs.
- PFAS Treatment Facilities. SCV Water will invest nearly $43 million over the two-year period on water treatment facilities dedicated to the removal of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and the restoration of local groundwater supplies. This is part of a much larger multiyear PFAS initiative. (PFAS is a group of man-made chemicals that have been found in trace amounts in the SCV’s water supply.)
- Equipment and Vehicle Improvements. To comply with regulations designed to reduce emission from the transportation sector and transition to zero-emission vehicles, SCV Water will invest $3.7 million to begin transitioning its fleet to zero emissions by acquiring EV vehicles and charging equipment.
Both the FY 2023/24 and FY 2024/25 budget are balanced and maintain existing levels of service. Budget highlights include the following approximate totals: Operating budget of $155.5 million in 2023/24 and $159 million in 2024/25; capital improvements of $123.1 million in 2023/24 and $148.5 million in 2024/25.
“SCV Water has assembled a biennial budget that allows the agency to implement its strategic plan, address groundwater contamination and comply with new and ongoing regulations while remaining a best-in-class service provider for the Santa Clarita Valley,” Rochelle Patterson, chief financial and administrative officer, said in the release.
The biennial FY 2023/24 and FY 2024/25 budget is posted in the Financial Information section at yourSCVwater.com.