City expects better desalination grant opportunities

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A new city designation will allow Avalon more access to grant funding to support desalination on the Island.

The City Council in Avalon continues to pursue funding for improvements to the desalinization facilities operated by Southern California Edison. Applications for State Proposition 1 funds  are  due  September 1  with  grant fund  award  notices  going  out  in December or by January 2018.

A new city designation will allow Avalon more access to grant funding to support desalination on the Island.

The City Council in Avalon continues to pursue funding for improvements to the desalinization facilities operated by Southern California Edison. Applications for State Proposition 1 funds  are  due  September 1  with  grant fund  award  notices  going  out  in December or by January 2018.

The City Council supports funding for desalinization and storage improvements that will make Avalon “drought-proof.” That goal becomes closer to reality if the State funds desal facility improvements that will be requested by SCE.

This week, the City’s Grant Manager Audra McDonald learned that the State of California  Department  of  Water Resources approved the City of Avalon’s request to be recognized as a DAC and EDC. Thanks to these designations,  the City and SCE will be eligible, if grant funds are awarded, for a higher percentage of funding. More dollars available through grant funding means less  SCE matching dollars needed and less impact on Avalon rate-payers.

SCE continues to examine the cost­ benefit of desal water storage options as it prepares to submit its application for funding.

At this time the State has not determined the potential reduction in required match for  the upcoming Desalinated Grants being submitted by SCE. In some cases, the usual 50 percent match is completely eliminated.

At the Sept. 5, meeting of the City Council, City Attorney Scott Campbell will present an agreement with the county and SCE for a $500,000 gift awarded by LA County for construction of “Desai 2.” During the meeting a report will be given on the units current output calculations.

Preliminary figures show “Desai 2” as able to serve Avalon’s average peak demand. Currently, peak demand is only 300,000 gallons thanks to the citizens of Avalon’s discipline and conservation habits. With well rehabilitation and renovations to “Desai 1,” Avalon is getting closer and closer to sustainability and becoming a drought proof community.

David Jinkens is the city manager of Avalon.

City expects better desalination grant opportunities