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

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Projects under Priority B use multiple strategies to reduce and remove contaminants in our local creeks, streams and bay. In addition to mercury treatment systems in our reservoirs, projects under this priority also prevent toxins from entering waterways by working with municipalities and other agencies to reduce runoff pollution. Valley Water also provides grants to reduce emerging contaminants and supports public education and volunteer cleanup efforts. Additional projects include coordinated cleanup of encampments near waterways, trash and graffiti removal, and rapid emergency response to hazardous materials spills.

Project B1: Impaired Water Bodies Improvement

Project B2: Interagency Urban Runoff Program

Project B3: Pollution Prevention Partnerships and Grants

Project B4: Good Neighbor Program: Encampment Cleanup

Project B5: Hazardous Materials Management and Response

Project B6: Good Neighbor Program: Remove Graffiti and Litter

Project B7: Support Volunteer Cleanup Efforts and Education

About the Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program

About the Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program

In November 2020, voters in Santa Clara County overwhelmingly approved Measure S, a renewal of Valley Water’s Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program.

The program was first passed by voters in 2000 as the Clean, Safe Creeks and Natural Flood Protection Plan, then again in 2012 as the Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Program. The renewal of the Safe, Clean Water Program will continue to provide approximately $47 million annually for local projects that deliver safe, clean water, natural flood protection, and environmental stewardship to all the communities we serve in Santa Clara County.

While evaluating ways to improve the 2012 program, Valley Water gathered feedback from more than 21,000 community members. That helped Valley Water create the six priorities for the renewed Safe, Clean Water Program, which are:

  • Priority A: Ensure a Safe, Reliable Water Supply
  • Priority B: Reduce Toxins, Hazards and Contaminants in our Waterways
  • Priority C: Protect our Water Supply and Dams from Earthquakes and Other Natural Disasters
  • Priority D: Restore Wildlife Habitat and Provide Open Space
  • Priority E: Provide Flood Protection to Homes, Businesses, Schools, Streets and Highways
  • Priority F: Support Public Health and Public Safety for Our Community

Each year, Valley Water 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. Additionally, the IMC also reviews each proposed 5-year implementation plan prior to its submittal for Board approval.

In addition, the program requires three independent audits.

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