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Well Permit Verification

Under Executive Orders N-7-22 and N-3-23, the YSGA must review all new well permits while California's drought emergency is in effect. This review does not apply to domestic wells extracting less than 2 acre-feet per year, or wells used for public water systems.

Yolo County Division of Environmental Health (DEH) is the permitting agency for groundwater wells, and applications should be submitted to DEH as normal. Yolo County Environmental Health Water Well Program

In order for DEH to issue a well permit, the YSGA must send written verification that groundwater extraction by the proposed well:

  • would not be inconsistent with any sustainable groundwater management program established in the Yolo Subbasin Groundwater Sustainability Plan AND
  •  would not decrease the likelihood of achieving a sustainability goal for the Yolo Subbasin.

YSGA Permit Review Procedures

To provide this verification, YSGA is currently updating procedures and criteria for use in reviewing well permits. An estimated timeline for these updates is provided below. While these updates are taking place, well permit reviews in or near the Focus Areas will experience delays.

Review and Release Draft Focus Areas Map for public commentOctober 30, 2023 
Public Comment Period for Draft Focus Areas MapOct. 30 - Nov. 14, 2023
Approve Focus Areas Map and Review Draft Hydrogeology Report Criteria November 20, 2023
Review Updated Draft Well Permitting Review Procedures and Consider Allowing Public Comment Period for Focus Areas Map and Well Permitting Review Hydrogeologic CriteriaJanuary 22, 2024
Potential Public Comment Period for Focus Areas Map and Well Permitting Review Hydrogeologic CriteriaFeb - Mar 2024
Finalize Well Permit Review ProceduresMar 2024
focus areas

The Focus Areas map was prepared using various hydrologic data, reported citizen concerns, and professional judgement to delineate areas in the Yolo Subbasin that may be sensitive to groundwater pumping and warrant additional information and analysis. These Focus Areas are not intended to be used outside of well permitting compliance with the Executive Orders and may be subject to change and revision based on future feedback from the YSGA Board of Directors and staff, stakeholders, and the public. 

Click here to view the Focus Areas map as of November 20, 2023

The Focus Areas are areas in the Yolo Subbasin in which well permit applicants that are not exempt from the Governor's Executive Orders may be required to submit additional information for the YSGA to review as part of the written verification process. This information may include a hydrogeologist report analyzing the well's impact on the aquifer. 

For well permit applications not located in Focus Areas, YSGA review will be based on the exceedance, or lack of exceedance, of minimum threshold values established in the Yolo Subbasin GSP. 

hydrogeologist report

The additional information to be provided by applicants proposing wells in Focus Areas is currently under development by the YSGA.  An update will be provided at the January 22 Board of Directors Meeting. 

Resources and Documents

More questions? Contact wellpermits@yolosga.org