MONDAY, APRIL 6, 2020:
The Tuolumne Utilities District (TUD) today announced that a scheduled Town Hall meeting to discuss the potential acquisition of water rights and facilities from Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has been postponed. The community event was scheduled for April 9th.
The decision was made in response to Governor Newsom’s order for Californians to stay home, and for large public gatherings to be cancelled during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“While we’re eager to discuss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity before us to secure reliable water supplies, we recognize the need to do our part in prioritizing the health and safety of our residents,” said TUD General Manager Edwin R. Pattison.
As previously announced, TUD and PG&E have entered into exclusive negotiations to transfer the Phoenix Hydroelectric Project from PG&E to TUD ownership. Under the proposed agreement, TUD would acquire the Phoenix Powerhouse, the Main Tuolumne Canal, the pre- and post-1914 water rights, the Lyons Dam and Reservoir, and Strawberry Dam and the Pinecrest Reservoir. The proposed acquisition would secure a locally controlled water system to provide reliable, cost-effective water for the people of Tuolumne County.
TUD launched a public education campaign, “TuoCo: Our Water, Our Future” to engage with community members and other stakeholders about this process and its impacts. The first of several planned Town Hall meetings was scheduled for Thursday, April 9th at the Sonora Opera Hall, at 250 South Washington Street in Sonora. The event will be rescheduled as soon as it’s deemed safe, so that community members will have opportunities to learn more, ask questions, and provide feedback.
Updates will be posted on www.tuocoourwater.com, where community members can also read more about this effort, and the history of water in Tuolumne County.