Groundwater Info Center
Key Legislation
New Groundwater Legislation, Sustainable Groundwater Management Act

On September 16, 2014, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a three-bill legislative package, composed of AB 1739 (Dickinson), SB 1168 (Pavley), and SB 1319 (Pavley), collectively known as the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act. The Governor’s signing message states "a central feature of these bills is the recognition that groundwater management in California is best accomplished locally".

Additional bills signed by the Governor in 2015 to amend the California Water Code include SB 13 (Pavley), AB 939 (Salas), SB 226 (Pavley), and AB 617 (Perea).

For additional information on SGMA, please visit the Sustainable Groundwater Management Program website.

California Water Code, Groundwater Management

Groundwater Management is outlined in the California Water Code, Division 6, Part 2.75, Chapters 1-5, Sections 10750 through 10755.4. The Groundwater Management Act was first introduced in 1992 as Assembly Bill 3030, and has since been modified by Senate Bill 1938 in 2002 and Assembly Bill 359 in 2011.

The intent of the Groundwater Management Act is to encourage local agencies to work cooperatively to manage groundwater resources within their jurisdictions and to provide a methodology for developing a Groundwater Management Plan.

Assembly Bill 3030 (AB 3030)

AB 3030 was signed into law in 1992 and provides a systematic procedure for anexisting local agency to develop a Groundwater Management Plan.
Assembly Bill 3030 - 1992 statutes
AB 3030 summary information

Senate Bill 1938 (SB 1938)

SB 1938, signed into law in 2002, modified the Groundwater Management Act by requiring any public agency seeking State funds administered through DWR for the construction of groundwater projects to prepare and implement a Groundwater Management Plan with specified required components. The SB 1938 requirements apply not just to management areas that overlie Bulletin 118 defined groundwater basins, but to those agencies that have groundwater management outside of those basins.

Senate Bill 1938 Chapter 603 - 2002 statutes
SB 1938 summary information

Assembly Bill 359 (AB 359)

AB 359, signed into law in 2011, modified the Groundwater Management Act by requiring public agencies to prepare and implement a groundwater management plan with an additional required component that is focused on identifying groundwater recharge areas. The AB 359 legislation also includes several plan adoption procedural changes.

Assembly Bill 359 - 2011 statutes
AB 359 summary information

Other Related Legislation

For Senate Bill X7 6 and Assembly Bill 1152 please refer to the California Statewide Groundwater Elevation Monitoring (CASGEM) website.

Bulleting 118 Update
The California Budget Act of 1999 authorized the update to Bulletin 118 and directed the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) to complete several tasks, including developing criteria for evaluating groundwater management plans and developing a model groundwater management ordinance.