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IID acts to advance Salton Sea restoration projects
The Imperial Irrigation District Board of Directors, Tuesday, approved an agreement with the state of California that paves the way for restoration projects identified in the state’s 10-year Salton Sea Management Program to move forward.
The easement agreement entered into between the district and the state, through the California Department of Water Resources, grants access to IID-owned lands that border the sea for constructing and maintaining the project. The action allows the California Natural Resources Agency to seek proposals for design-build contracts for the Species Conservation Habitat Project, which intends to provide habitat for fish and birds while suppressing harmful dust on Salton Sea lands that are no longer under water.
“Today’s action by the IID Board will help these important projects cross the finish line,” said Henry Martinez, general manager, who worked closely with state officials on the agreement. “IID has committed a significant amount of time and resources into the development of the Species Conservation Habitat Project and we look forward to seeing the project completed.”
The Species Conservation Habitat Project encompasses about 3,770 acres of exposed playa, which spans the New River at the Salton Sea. As set forth in the state’s 10-year Sea restoration plan, the project includes ponds using blended water from the New River and the Salton Sea, which will be more than 6 feet deep to accommodate a sustainable fishery.
The California Natural Resources Agency is currently in the process of seeking responses to a request for qualifications to develop a short list of bidders for the project.
The easement agreement allows for the planning, design, construction, implementation, operation, maintenance, repair, etc., of the restoration project.