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LA Rainfall :
Since July 1: 7.45" (56% of normal)
California Snow Levels:
8% of normal 8% of peak
California Reservoir Levels:
65% of average 46% of capacity
Watering Index: 69%
San Gabriel Valley
   Groundwater Level
The San Gabriel Valley
Municipal Water District
provides reliable supplemental water for the communities of Alhambra, Azusa, Monterey Park and Sierra Madre in a
cost-effective and environmentally responsible manner.

Service Area Map

California Getting Serious about Drought and Water Conservation!

As it did in early 2014, the State has again taken strong actions to combat our severe, 4-year long drought. First, on March 17, the State Water Resources Control Board expanded water conservation regulations and, second, on March 19, $1 billion of funding was proposed for Emergency Drought Legislation. Part of the reason is ongoing dry weather conditions, and part of the reason is that the State and its residents and businesses have only attained an 11% cut in water use while the State had called for 20% voluntary water use reductions.

As the winter season comes to an end, California is experiencing historically low snowpack (12% of normal), the driest January in history, continued above average temperatures and tenuous reservoir supplies. Last week, Jay Famiglietti, a senior water scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, predicted that California “has only about one year of water supply left in its reservoirs.” Locally in the San Gabriel Valley, year-to-date precipitation levels are at only 58% of normal and the Baldwin Park Key Well, a relied-upon indicator of local groundwater levels, was at its lowest point in more than a decade.

More and more Californians understand the need for action. A Field Poll released on February 26 shows that “94% of residents believe the drought is serious.” With that as background, here is a summary of action this week.

Gung Hay Fat Choy!
Happy New Year!

It's the year of the Goat... or Sheep... or Ram...

Whatever your preference,
Happy New Year!

The District joins with the Chinese community throughout its service area to celebrate the New Year and all it means for health and prosperity. This year, the District was involved in sponsoring and attending two major festivals:

  • 2015 Chinese New Year Festival at Monterey Park on February 7-8
  • Alhambra Lunar New Year Celebration on February 21

Drought Update – Winter 2015

As we are just past the mid-point of the winter season, the District has updated the "Drought Update/Frequently Asked Questions" section of our website HERE. The section includes valuable information about the Valley's water supply, the ongoing, severe drought and water conservation. There are answers to several dozen questions and links to important resources as well. The San Gabriel Valley is now entering the fourth year of this very severe drought. Here's a quick status as it relates to our member cities of Alhambra, Azusa, Monterey Park and Sierra Madre:

  • the State's Drought Emergency and voluntary requirement to reduce water usage by 20% remains in effect
  • each City has its own unique water policies and procedures (consult your city water department for details)
  • above average rainfall in December; very low rainfall before and after December
  • temperatures remain warmer than normal
  • the snowpack on which we rely for year-long groundwater replenishment is just 12% of normal as of March 19th
  • reservoir levels are at about 60% of average and 40% of capacity, improving recently due to heavy rain in northern California
  • imported water deliveries from the State Water Project, which we use to replenish local groundwater, have been reduced to 20% of normal (as of February 2015)
  • wells in the San Gabriel Basin are at relatively low levels (click to view Baldwin Park Key Well for example), but due to sound water management policies and water conservation, the Valley's water supply should be sufficient for another year or two even if the drought continues.

This means we all need to remain very smart about our water usage. While we've made impressive water savings throughout the Valley, we can do more. Please review our updated "Drought Update" and use these winter and spring months to continue your good habits and to prepare for the upcoming warm summer months.

You will see lots of news coverage about the drought in upcoming months. Please remember, depending on what newspapers you read or TV/radio stations you listen to, you may obtain water-related information about the San Gabriel Valley, or their may be stories about California, Los Angeles or the Southern California region overall. If you have any question about whether information related to water supply, water rationing, water prices, water ordinances and water conservation relate to you or your city, or for more information, please contact your City water department, visit our website: or call 626-969-7911.


Introducing our New 2015 Drought Update Website Section

The San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District wants to share the whole story about the 2015 Drought with you. We have received numerous questions from stakeholders about the drought, about water supply, about water prices and water rationing, about water conservation and more.

Using, a "Frequently Asked Questions" format, and a theme of "Know Your H2O," we have compiled questions and answers relating to the topics of interest to you.

You may visit the site by clicking on the "2015 Drought Update" tab in the upper left corner of our home page. You can also enter the 2015 Drought Update via the navigation menus on the left.

Please stay informed about the Drought by perusing our website, calling us (626-969-7911) or by emailing us at ( with any questions.

Remember: "Know Your H2O" and Conserve!

Virtual Educational Water Tour
General Public Education
Water Conservation Pilot Projects
Grant-Funded Water Supply and Quality Projects

March 9, 2015
Sacramento Bee
David Siders
Gov. Jerry Brown, lawmakers to propose $1 billion drought relief bill
With California entering its fourth year of drought, Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders will propose more than $1 billion in emergency legislation Thursday for flood protection and water supply projects and to alleviate impacts of the drought.
March 5, 2015
Los Angeles Times
Bettina Boxall
A dry January pulled down water conservation rate in California
After getting a gold star for saving water in December, California's conservation efforts flagged in January.s
March 5, 2015
Los Angeles Times
Geoffrey Mohan
NOAA: El Nino is 'too little, too late' for California drought
El Niño is here, but don't expect the Pacific Ocean circulation phenomenon to do much for the drought afflicting California and the western U.S., forecasters said Thursday.
March 3, 2015
Geoffrey Mohan
DWR Says Statewide Snowpack at 19% is Lowest Since 1991
The Department of Water Resources' third manual snow survey of the season showed the state's snowpack at disappointingly low levels on Tuesday.
February 9, 2015
Los Angeles Daily News
Paul Rogers
How can Southern California be so dry while storms soak Northern California
Lots of issues divide Northern and Southern California: The Giants vs. the Dodgers. Hollywood vs. Silicon Valley. Southern Californians say “the” before naming a freeway; northerners don’t.
February 7,2015
Los Angeles Daily News
Steve Scauzillo
Global warming wasn’t the only reason 2014 was California’s hottest year
Many blame man-made global warming.
January 29, 2015
Los Angeles Daily News
Bettina Boxall
Scientists see shrinking California snowpack as a harbinger
State workers performed a California winter ritual Thursday, poking hollow aluminum tubes into Sierra Nevada meadows to measure the snowpack. In what scientists see as a harbinger, they didn't find much.
January 28, 2015
Inland Valley Daily Bulletin Posted: 01/28/15, 8:55 PM PST | 0 Comments
Neil Nisperos
California to deliver more water to local water agencies after rains
State water delivery to regional water agencies, while still significantly down because of the drought, will rise slightly this year as a result of rainy weather the past few months.
January 1, 2015
Los Angeles Times
A Times staff writer
San Francisco gets no rain in January for first time in 165 years
In another sign California's persistent drought, downtown San Francisco recorded no measurable rain in January for the first time in 165 years.
December 8, 2014
Joseph Serna
Los Angeles Daily News
California drought weakens, forecasters have 'cautious optimism' for future
For the first time in five months, a majority of California is no longer considered to be in an exceptional drought, the most severe level possible under federal guidelines, the U.S. Drought Monitor announced Thursday.
December 9, 2014
Los Angeles Daily News
Our 1,200-year drought and bad water policies: Editorial
People with professional expertise in California’s four-year drought — plus those just looking for something new to worry about — get it right about expecting too much from last week’s and this week’s storms.
December 7, 2014
Los Angeles Daily News
aul Rogers
Study: California drought the worst in 1,200 years
The past three years of drought were the most severe that California has experienced in at least 1,200 years, according to a new scientific study.
December 4, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Joseph Serna
It's official: California storm didn't cure the drought
Despite a “respectable” amount of rain this week across all of California, it wasn’t enough for federal agencies to improve the state’s drought picture, new data released Thursday show.
October 2, 2014
San Gabriel Valley Tribune Posted:
Steve Scauzillo
Scientists say extreme heat complicating California’s drought
Studies show the state’s severe drought is made worse by rising air temperatures — a secondary and often overlooked factor that is depleting reservoir levels through increased evaporation and accelerating outdoor water use among homeowners.
September 24, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Rosanna Xia, Hector Becerra
Northern California fires may offer a grim preview for Southland
scores of homes and consumed huge swaths of land. The state has seen 1,000 more wildfires so far this year compared to the average, many of them in northern forest areas left bone-dry by the drought.
September 10, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Matt Stevens
Californians cut water use 7.5% in July as drought continues
Californians have shown a quick about-face and have started cutting back on water usage in urban areas, the State Water Resources Control Board annofsunced Tuesday.
September 2, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Veronica Rocha
El Niño forecast is up in the air for Southern California
With the summer winding down, weather officials say the winter forecast is wide open.
August 30, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Veronica Rocha
Chance of 'megadrought' in U.S. Southwest now 50%, study says
The chance of a "megadrought" gripping the Southwest for more than 30 years has increased to 50%, scientists say, which means bad news for California's already parched landscape.
August 24, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Rong-Gong Lin II
Western drought causes Earth's surface to rise as water levels drop
A year and a half of drought has depleted 63 trillion gallons of water across the Western United States, according to a new study that documents how the parched conditions are altering the landscape.
August 28, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Melanie Mason
California drought report: Thunderstorms bring slight relief to desert
Over the last week, the only spot in California to see improved drought conditions was -- of all places -- Mojave Desert, officials reported.
August 9, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Melanie Mason
California lawmakers considering historic shift in groundwater policy
As California continues to endure a calamitous lack of water from the sky, the state could, for the first time, start to regulate water drawn from the ground.
July 21, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Hector Becerra
California drought: Record heat gives some cantaloupe crops sunburn
The temperatures were so hot this year in Joe Del Bosque’s cantaloupe fields in the San Joaquin Valley that some of the melons could have used sunscreen.
July 16, 2014
San Gabreal Valley Tribune
Steve Scauzillo
Southern California using 8 percent more water than last year
Southern Californians used 8 percent more water in May than last year, a bump related to soaring temperatures and faith in a drought-busting El Niño that made conservation seem less urgent, water experts said Wednesday.
July 19, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Mark Boster
California drought will only get worse, experts say
California is probably headed into a deeper drought this summer, making it harder to escape in the future, an expert says.
July 10, 2014
San Garbriel Valley Tribune
Steve Scauzillo
El Niño coming to Southern California, but can it take out the drought?
National climatologists are sticking to their prediction that an El Niño is about 80 percent probable in North America during fall and early winter, when the rainy season begins in Southern California, according to a bulletin released Thursday.
July 8, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Jay Famiglietti
How much water does California have left?
Southern California water managers are doing such a great job that you would hardly know we are in the midst of the worst drought since record-keeping began in the late 1800s.
June 27, 2014
San Gabriel Valley Tribune
California drought blankets entire state; El Niño forecast dims
Not too long ago in this season of California’s massive and extended drought, climate experts saw a small glimmer of hope on the horizon: Predictions for a wet El Niño season coming in the winter that would bring badly needed rain and relief to a parched state.
June 24, 2014
The Los Angeles Times
Gov. Jerry Brown's proposal intensifies water bond negotiations
Gov. Jerry Brown's call for a drastically cheaper water bond set off a fresh round of negotiations in the Capitol on Wednesday, as lawmakers and stakeholders seek to craft a plan that addresses the state's myriad water needs without a bloated price tag.
June 24, 2014
The Los Angeles Times
Gov. Jerry Brown pushes for scaled-down, $6-billion water bond
Gov. Jerry Brown told legislative leaders Tuesday that he wants a $6-billion water bond to be put before voters in November — a substantially lower price tag than proposals making their way through the Legislature.
June 22, 2014
The Los Angeles Times
Times Editorial Board
What does drought-stricken California need? A water bond.
Los Angeles has begun a historic drive to decrease its dependence on imported water.
June 20, 2014
The Los Angeles Times
Water war bubbling up between California and Arizona
Once upon a time, California and Arizona went to war over water.
June 19, 2014
The Los Angeles Times
George Skelton
Op-Ed 'Chinatown' in real life: In L.A., you have to follow the water
It's been 40 years since the June 20, 1974, opening of "Chinatown," the fictionalized drama about power, corruption and what is arguably L.A.'s most crucial resource: water.
June 18, 2014
The Los Angeles Times
George Skelton
Brown's tunnel plan looms over effort to pass water bonds
As lawmakers struggle to craft a water bond proposal for voters, there's a huge reservoir of wonderful, non-controversial project ideas. But practically everyone is suffering from tunnel vision. Literally.
June 17, 2014
The Los Angeles Times
Hugo Martin
Drought is a drain on California lake, reservoir tourism
Drought is disrupting a variety of activities that help make up the state's outdoor recreation industry.
June 15, 2014
The Los Angeles Daily News
Paul Rogers
Nation’s largest desalination plant looking to provide drought-proof water supply to Southern California
On sunny afternoons, this stretch of beach 35 miles north of San Diego offers a classic Southern California backdrop: joggers, palm trees and surfers, flanked by waves rolling in and pelicans soaring overhead.
May 8, 2014
The Los Angeles Daily News
Matt Weiser
Chance of El Niño raises to 78 percent
Drought-weary California, heading into a long, hot summer of water shortages and extreme fire risk, received some potentially good news Thursday: Federal scientists announced there is now a 4-in-5 chance of El Niño conditions developing by the end of the year.
April 30, 2014
The Sacramento Bee
Matt Weiser
Water cutbacks looming for California farmers, water agencies
California water officials are on the verge of making an unusually drastic pronouncement in response to the ongoing drought: Ordering hundreds of water agencies, farmers and other property owners to stop diverting water from rivers in which they have longstanding water rights..
April 25, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Chris Megerian
Gov. Jerry Brown issues new executive order on drought
SACRAMENTO -- With every part of California suffering from the drought, Gov. Jerry Brown issued a new executive order on Friday in an attempt to provide some relief from the persistent dry conditions across the state
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