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Sacramento, County of v. State Water Resources Control Bd.

ELR Citation: 37 ELR 20212
Nos. No. C052237, (Cal. App. 3d Dist., 08/09/2007)

A California appellate court upheld water quality orders issued by a regional water board requiring a county to establish limitations for coliform effluent in groundwater underlying a county-operated, youth correctional facility wastewater treatment plant. The county argued that the board misapplied the water quality objective for bacteria in groundwater set forth in the regional water quality control plan because the groundwater in the vicinity of the plant is not used for domestic or municipal supply. But nothing in the water plan distinguishes between present and future uses of water. Restricting the water quality objective for bacteria to groundwater based on current uses would read in a temporal element not found in the language of the plan. In sum, the water quality orders are consistent with the water plan and effectuate the intent to protect present and future beneficial uses of groundwater.