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Irrigation district extends water season

3 board seats open for nominees Local irrigation canals won’t be drying up just yet. Though originally projected to end this week, surface water deliveries will continue through August, whether in full or in part, according to Madera Irrigation District.

The district began delivering water to growers on March 20. Since then the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has increased its allocations, and the district has acquired additional supplies through various programs, the public agency said.

“MID is determined to maximize the availability of surface water supplies to our growers,” said General Manager Thomas Greci after press time Friday. “These additional supplies and extended water season will help to preserve and enhance our groundwater resources. MID strongly encourages its growers to take advantage of this opportunity to utilize surface water supplies while they are available.”

The water rates are $120 per acre foot for original district users and $340 per acre foot for subordinate users.

With this extension, this year’s water season will be about five months in all, the longest season for the district in five years.

The district will have three seats of its five-member board of directors up to vote on the ballot Nov. 8. The deadline for nomination and declaration of candidacy ends Aug. 12, unless an incumbent fails to file for office. In that case, the deadline extends to Aug. 17. Interested candidates must file required documentation at the Madera County Clerk-Recorder’s Office, 200 W. 4th St. If nominees fail to step forward, members will be appointed.

Though it serves rural areas in Madera County, Madera Irrigation District also covers a large segment of the city of Madera. The district operates 300 miles of open flow canal systems and 150 miles of large diameter pipelines.

It has a Central Valley Project contract with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation for up to 85,000 acre feet of Class 1 water and 186,000 acre feet of Class 2 water, as well as about 24,000 acre feet through a Hidden Unit contract. The water comes from Millerton and Hensley lakes.

To start or stop water orders, call 673-9241 the day before you wish the deliveries to be dealt with. For information on candidacy, contact board secretary Andrea Sandoval, 673-3514, ext. 215.

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