Padre Dam's East County Water Purification Program moving forward

Oct. 6, 2017
Board approves funding to prepare for implementation and adopts policy on local supply incentive programs.

SANTEE, CA, OCT 6, 2017 -- Padre Dam Municipal Water District's Board of Directors unanimously approved a contract for the next phase of work on the East County Advanced Water Purification Program. The project, which is expected to produce up to 30% of East County's water by 2023, is a collaboration between Padre Dam, Helix Water District, the City of El Cajon and the County of San Diego. Padre Dam's Board also adopted a policy recognizing the importance of local supply programs and their regional benefit and support of legally formulated local supply incentive programs by Metropolitan Water District and the San Diego County Water Authority to share in the cost of providing that regional benefit.

"The entire Padre Dam Board believes the Advanced Water Purification Program has great promise to provide significant regional water and wastewater benefits for all project partners and the region and I for one cannot wait to see this project implemented," said Augie Caires, board president.

The approved contract consists of a $3.6 million contract with Kennedy/Jenks Consultants to continue engineering planning, research, outreach and other projects vital to the program's successful implementation. Funding for this continued work comes from Padre Dam's Advanced Water Purification fund and from project partners, who are expected to contribute approximately $500 thousand each.

"We are excited to start work on the next phase of the East County Advanced Water Purification Program and move the project towards implementation," said Allen Carlisle, general manager/CEO of Padre Dam, "This next phase of work is significant in reaching final implementation agreements with our project partners and getting the Project prepared for construction and operation.

East County is ready for a local, reliable and sustainable drinking water supply and we are working hard to make that a reality."

The Board of Directors also adopted a policy statement in support of local supply incentive programs which states, " Padre Dam Municipal Water District believes that reliable local water supplies developed by local agencies thereby offsetting demand for imported water provide a regional reliability benefit to the entire MWD and CWA service areas. Furthermore it is the policy of Padre Dam to support legally formulated local supply incentive programs by MWD and CWA to share in the cost of providing that regional benefit."

Before voting on approval of the contract, the Board was shown a newly-released rendering of the final water treatment facilities, including the expansion of the Ray Stoyer Water Recycling Facility and the new Advanced Water Purification Facility and Education Center.

"These new facilities that the project will entail are expected to treat 15 million gallons of wastewater per day as well as creating 10.5 million gallons per day of drought resilient water supply to East County." Added Carlisle, "This will help the region minimize our reliance on imported water, which continues to face rising costs, as well as environment and legislative challenges."

An initial contract with Kennedy/Jenks, approved in February 2016, resulted in environmental and regulatory testing and compliance as well as a detailed determination of financial feasibility for the regional program. During this process, the East County Advance Water Purification Program received conceptual approval from the Department of Drinking Water, moving the program closer to final implementation. Studies during the recently completed work also showed the Advanced Water Purification Program to be financially competitive with imported water supply given local supply incentives and with current treatment and disposal of wastewater.

The East County Advanced Water Purification Program is a partnership between Padre Dam, Helix Water District, the County of San Diego and the City of El Cajon. Padre Dam is currently the lead agency and the partner agencies express support for the Program through memorandums of understandings and funding support for the Program. Visit for more information about the East County Advanced Water Purification Program and to tour the Advanced Water Purification Demonstration Facility.

About Padre Dam
Padre Dam provides water, sewer, recycled water and recreation services to approximately 100,000 residents in East San Diego County including Santee, El Cajon, Lakeside, Flinn Springs, Harbison Canyon, Blossom Valley, Alpine, Dehesa and Crest. The District currently imports 100% of its drinking water supply and treats two million gallons per day (MGD) of wastewater at its Water Recycling Facility. Visit for more information.