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E1: Vegetation Control and Sediment Removal for Flood Protection*

About This Project

This project supports the District’s ongoing vegetation control and sediment removal activities that reduce flood risk by maintaining design conveyance capacity of flood protection projects. These activities also provide access for maintenance personnel and equipment. The project includes: controlling in-stream vegetation growth, removing sediment at appropriate intervals, removing hazardous trees, and performing weed abatement and pruning to provide access and establish firebreaks. Before carrying out in-stream maintenance, District personnel perform biological pre-construction surveys to minimize environmental impacts. Allocations for Project E1 also helps fund future maintenance of flood protection projects completed under the Safe, Clean Water program.

This project is comprised of 4 sub-projects that support the District’s ongoing vegetation control and sediment removal activities. Reference Appendix B in the 5-Year Implementation Plan for project descriptions. These sub-projects are:

  • E1.1 Vegetation Control for Capacity

  • E1.2 Sediment Removal for Capacity

  • E1.3 Maintenance of Newly Improved Creeks

  • E1.4 Vegetation Management for Access


*This project was voter approved as part of the Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program.

Los Coches Creek
On Target
Start FY 2014 / Finish FY 2028
Safe, Clean Water Fund ($59.5 million), Watershed and Stream Stewardship Fund
News and UpdatesNews and Updates
Reports and DocumentsReports and Documents
Environmental and Community BenefitsEnvironmental and Community Benefits
History and BackgroundHistory and Background
News & Updates

Key Performance Indicators for the Safe, Clean Water Program

KPI #1: Maintain 90% of improved channels at design capacity.

E1.1: Vegetation Control for Capacity
Completed 444 acres of in-stream vegetation management to reduce flood risk on 94 miles of streams throughout the county using an integrated combination of mechanical, hand labor and herbicide methods through FY18 Q3 (July 1, 2017 - March 31, 2018).

E1.2: Sediment Removal for Capacity
Completed 14 sediment removal projects, 36,631 cubic yards of sediment removed to maintain design capacity through FY18 Q3 (July 1, 2017 - March 31, 2018).  The Safe, Clean Water Program funds 14% of this work, which equates to approximately 5,128 CY.

E1.3: Maintenance of Newly Improved Creeks
As no Safe, Clean Water flood protection capital improvement projects have yet been completed, no maintenance work was conducted on newly improved creeks in FY18 Quarter 3, and therefore, no expenditures have been made from the $19.1 million identified in the original 15-year plan. These funds will remain set aside for this project.

KPI #2: Provide vegetation management for 6,120 acres along levee and maintenance roads.

E1.4: Vegetation Management for Access
Completed 2,2179 acres of maintenance access work in all 5 watersheds through Q3 FY18 relative to an annual target of 2,720 acres. Of this total acreage, 15% of the completed work was funded by Safe, Clean Water for a total of 327 acres towards the 15-year goal of 6,120 acres. During the first 4 years of the program, the total accomplishment for the program is 1,786 acres, compared to a 4 year target of 1,632 acres. To date, the program is on target for year 4.

Updated April 2018

For more information:

E1.1: Vegetation Control

E1.2: Sediment Removal

E1.3: Maintenance of Newly Improved Creeks

E1.4: Vegetation Management


Smith Creek Upstream of Granada Way




Reports & Documents

No current documents. 

Environmental & Community Benefits

Key Performance Indicators for the Safe, Clean Water Program

  1. Maintain 90% of improved channels at design capacity

  2. Provide vegetation management for 6,120 acres along levee and maintenance roads. 


  • Ensures that existing flood protection projects continue to provide maximum flood protection

  • Provides safe access for maintenance of creek channels

  • Reduces fire risk along creeks and maintains compliance with fire codes

  • Improves water quality

Geographic Area of Benefit


History & Background

About the Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program

In November 2012 the voters of Santa Clara County overwhelmingly approved Measure B, the Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program, as a countywide special parcel tax for 15 years with a sunset date of June 30, 2028. This Program replaced the Clean, Safe Creeks and Natural Flood Protection Plan, which voters approved in November 2000.

The Safe, Clean Water Program was developed with input from more than 16,000 residents and stakeholders and was created to match the community’s needs and values. The voters of Santa Clara County identified five priorities:

Priority A: Ensure a Safe, Reliable Water Supply

Priority B: Reduce Toxins, Hazards and Contaminants in our Waterways

Priority C: Protect our Water Supply from Earthquakes and Natural Disasters

Priority D: Restore Wildlife Habitat and Provide Open Space

Priority E: Provide Flood Protection to Homes, Businesses, Schools and Highways

Other: Six projects from the Clean, Safe, Creeks Plan have been carried forward into the Safe, Clean Water Program.  

Each year, the District prepares a report providing a progress update for each of these Program priorities, along with fiscal year accomplishments.

To ensure transparency and accountability to the voters, the ballot measure also created an Independent Monitoring Committee, appointed by the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors. The Independent Monitoring Committee annually reviews the Program’s progress to ensure the outcomes are achieved in a cost-efficient manner and reports its findings to the Board.

In addition, the Program requires three independent audits, the first of which was conducted in FY 2017.

View the Safe, Clean Water Program’s annual reports, annual IMC audit reports, and independent audits, including a staff response, on the District website.