The limits of water resources in California are becoming clear given the increasing growth and development in our State. This is especially true in Orange County where rapid growth since the 1960’s have made the County’s population in 2007 the second largest in the state. This growth has created need for water resource infrastructure for flood management, water supply, water quality and habitat restoration.
State agencies are promoting a new approach to water resource management that requires integrated, multi-purpose and multi-benefit planning to address our limited water resources. The State has outlined a new approach to require watershed regions, such as Newport Beach, to develop an Integrated Coastal Regional Watershed Plan or IRCWMP. To make this planning process effective, coordination of all stakeholders becomes an essential factor. Communities determine a process to define watershed goals and identify projects that cross jurisdictional boundaries and mandates. The IRCWMP is a significant step forward in water resource planning for the region by taking a closer look at effective collaboration, meaningful integration, and project prioritization.
Recognizing the increasing challenges ahead for water resource management, Newport Beach stakeholders are creating a framework for coordinated planning among all water managers to promote integration planning of water management activities. It is a road map to:
- create an effective method for understanding and defining water resource issues;
- combine all water resource projects within the watershed;
- seek solutions that satisfy and balance stakeholder requirements;
- implement cost-effective remediation and restoration measures; and
- define cost-effective ways to manage operations and maintenance.
A variety of State and / or Federal Grants have been applied to assist with the City's implementation of the Watershed Management Plan:
- Prop 84 - BMP implementation grants
- Prop 50 - IRCWMP grants
- Prop 40 - Clean Beaches Initiatives grant
- Prop 13 - Coastal Non-Point Source Program, Watershed Protection Program
- Prop 12 - Riparian Habitat Program
- Grant Exhibit
The City of Newport Beach water resources program can be broken into three watersheds:
- Newport Coast Watershed including the Areas of Significant Biological Significance or ASBS, which are the coastal and marine areas that run along Newport Coast.
- Newport Bay Watershed including the HAMP and the subwatershed IRCWMP draining to the bay.
- Semeniuk Slough Subwatershed in West Newport Beach draining to the Santa Ana River.
Newport Coast Challenges
The Newport Coast area includes the ten square mile Newport Coast Watershed and the ASBS areas which run from the Little Corona to El Morro Canyon and extend 1,000 feet offshore.
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