Central Valley Flood Protection Board

The Central Valley Flood Protection Board (Board) establishes, maintains, and enforces standards for the construction, maintenance, and operation of the flood control system to protect life, property, and habitat in California’s Central Valley. The Board coordinates State entities, local flood risk control agencies and the federal government to minimize damages from floods in California’s Central Valley and is the non-federal sponsor for federal flood control projects in the State Plan of Flood Control. The Board serves as a public forum for flood risk reduction policy in the Central Valley and is responsible for adopting updates to the Central Valley Flood Protection Plan every five years.


 

PUBLIC HOURS AND MEETING SCHEDULE

In accordance with the Governor’s order, the Board will continue to host hybrid meetings and workshops. Locations and access information for future meetings will be posted on our homepage and updated as needed.

For public drop off of physical documents, including applications and fees, we can be contacted by phone or email as noted below to schedule a drop off.

  • With our new hybrid teleworking environment, most staff are only at our office location on Tuesdays each week. Administrative staff are available at the front desk Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8:30 am – 3:00 pm. Appointments are required to meet with staff or receive in-person assistance at the front desk.  If you are currently working with a staff member on an item, please continue to contact that staff member.  If you need general information, please contact the general mailbox at Questions@CVFlood.ca.gov.

  • We will be prioritizing permits based upon health and safety factors, including the availability of staff and partners, and application processing times may be extended during this period.  Please bear with us as we work through this new system.

  • Past recordings of Board meetings and workshops can be found on the CVFPB YouTube Channel

Jane Dolan
Board President

 

NEWS & HIGHLIGHTS

Increasing Resiliency and Capacity Through the Use of Levee Setbacks: Lower Elkhorn Basin

From Engineering With Nature: by US Army

Engineer Research and Development Center

– The Lower Elkhorn Basin Levee Setback (LEBLS) Project is a multibenefit project that provides broad flood risk reduction and ecosystem benefits for a large region within California’s Central Valley. For this project, the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) has constructed an approximately 11,500-meter setback levee to expand the Sacramento and Yolo bypasses by about 450 meters. Construction started in August 2020, and the existing levees were breached in summer 2023 for use of the expanded bypass in winter. The expansion of the bypasses significantly reduces the risk of flooding for the Sacramento area; when coupled with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Sacramento Weir Widening Project, the water surface elevation in the Sacramento River will be reduced by nearly 30 centimeters during high-water events. The expanded bypass footprint area will be used for agriculture and habitat, compatible with seasonal flooding. LEBLS is the first state-led project to be implemented from the Central Valley Flood Protection Plan (CVFPP), which was developed to better manage the risk of flooding in California’s Central Valley, specifically in areas classified as protected by the State Plan of Flood Control. LEBLS has been recognized as a well-performing project at state and local levels. (more)

Only 8% of California Rivers and Streams Have Gauges Measuring Flow, Study Finds

From The Los Angeles Times – In the face of climate change and worsening cycles of drought, California water managers have been increasingly focused on the precise tracking of water resources. Snowpack in the Sierra Nevada is measured with sensors and aerial images, reservoir levels are electronically logged, and the movement of water through aqueducts is apportioned based on rights and contracts. Yet there is another key water metric that California has never adequately measured: the flow of rivers and streams. New research by UC Berkeley scientists has found that only 8% of the state’s rivers and streams are equipped with gauges — devices that measure the level and rate of movement of water. (more)

COMMENTARY: Investing Now to Keep Valley Safe from Megafloods

From mavensnotebook.com: Commentary from  Senator Alvarado-Gil, Assemblyman Heath Flora, and Assemblywoman Esmeralda Soria – We all know it. You shouldn’t wait to close the barn door until after the horse has bolted.  That’s an important lesson for Central Valley communities today. California didn’t experience floods this past winter like we did in 2023. But given that the legislature is writing a bond now, this is the time to speak up to keep our communities safe from catastrophic flooding in the future. A flooded street in Merced County on Jan. 11, 2023. A year and a half ago, the town of Planada was hit by a devastating flood. When a debris-clogged Miles Creek overflowed, the resulting flood hit like a gut-punch. UC Merced researchers found that 83 percent of all households suffered, and many lost everything. “These were more than houses,” one anguished resident told the media, “they were symbols of a lifetime of hard work.” Climate models predict future floods could be up to five times larger than the historic 1997 flood that drowned nearly 300 square miles of the state. And the San Joaquin Valley will be Ground Zero for the worst of it. The worst-case scenario predicts an almost incomprehensible $1 trillion in damages across the state – in what could be one of the biggest natural disasters ever. Most of that damage could happen in the Valley. (more)

More News & Highlights...

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Congratulations

Central Valley Flood Protection Board (CVFPB) and Department of Water Resources (DWR) Receive Floodplain Management Association’s (FMA) Integrated Flood Management Award

This award is given to individuals or project teams who have prepared and/or implemented a locally-approved, state-approved, or federally-approved multi-objective flood management plan. Candidate projects should demonstrate innovative advancements in water management as well as collaborative partnerships with community groups and the general public. Project outcomes should benefit many stakeholder interests such as environmental, flood control, recreational, and emergency planning and responsiveness.

“The Central Valley Flood Protection Board and DWR are proud to receive the Floodplain Management Association’s Integrated Flood Management Award for the 2022 Central Valley Flood Protection Plan (CVFPP) Update.” The CVFPP Update was recognized for a robust, multi-year communication and engagement process involving state, federal, Tribal, regional, and local partners. DWR, with CVFPB input, incorporated the newest information, updated science, and innovative tools to develop priorities for improving flood risk management in the Central Valley. CVFPB officially approved the Update on December 16, 2022. Learn more about the CVFPP here. Congratulations to both agencies!