What You Need to Know About the State Water Use Order

Published:  August 28, 2015

What is an information order and does it apply to me?

The State Water Resources Control Board has required property owners in four Russian River subbasins to report their water use. While PRMD permits wells, the State is responsible for implementing the information order. PRMD is committed to helping our customers comply with the order.

The four subbasins are Dutch, Green Valley, portions of Mark West, and Mill Creeks as shown below.

Click on image for full size PDF (6.12 MB)
thumbnail image of Russian River Sub-basins Affected by Emergency Rules, click for full-size PDF version

How do I measure my well use?

The State is mailing a letter to each property owner explaining the information order and providing a time limit within which the owner must comply with State requirements. Nonresidential users will have to provide well pumping rates. Residential users can provide actual water use through a flow rate meter. If you have a water treatment system on your well, you may already have a flow rate meter. If you do not have a meter and want to install one, we recommend having a service provider install it. This is not a good DIY project unless you really know what you’re doing! Flow rate meter installation costs approximately $500-$1000. We suggest you find a qualified company by searching the telephone directory or web search engine for “water well service providers.” Alternatively, the information order allows residential users to report the number of residents dependent on the well(s) OR monitor water tank average daily flow rates over time.

Do I need a permit to install a meter or a tank?

The Director and Chief Building Official have determined that no county permit is required to install a flow rate meter or a storage tank of 5,000 gallon or less in capacity.

What other well information do I need to provide and how do I submit it?

The State is also asking for well location, diameter, depth, and other information the owner may know. PRMD may have well permit information available to owners. This information is available in our office to customers with proof of ownership during permit center lobby hours: Monday-Tuesday 8:00 AM-4:00 PM, Wednesday 10:30 PM-4:00 PM, and Thursday-Friday 8:00 AM-4:00 PM. PRMD is located at 2550 Ventura Avenue, Santa Rosa, CA 95403.

To submit the information, the well owner must use an electronic form hosted on the State’s website. To open the form, you’ll need the login number and password provided in the letter the State sent you.

What’s next?

As we at PRMD learn more about the information order and what it means for our customers, we will update our public outreach media.

Please contact us with questions and thank you for your patience. We will all get through this difficult drought by working together.