Big Bear News – Big Bear, CA – U.S. Congressman Jay Obernolte secured $11 million in funding for projects in California’s 8th District that passed the U.S. House of Representatives as part of this week’s major appropriations package. This includes $960,000 for the Replenish Big Bear project aimed at providing a reliable and sustainable local water supply.
“As the drought in California continues to worsen, it is more important now than ever that projects like Replenish Big Bear receive the funding they need to secure reliable water resources for our community and protect our natural resources,” said Rep. Obernolte. “I am proud to fight for funding to support this project and to bolster efforts to recover and preserve our valuable water supply.”
BBARWA General Manager David Lawrence said, “We appreciate Congressman Obernolte’s support and dedication to the Big Bear Valley. The Replenish Big Bear Project is a great opportunity to improve groundwater sustainability and enhance our natural ecosystem.”
The $960,000 in funding will go to the Big Bear Area Regional Wastewater Agency (BBARWA) to support the Replenish Big Bear Project, a recycled water project aimed at recovering local water resources currently discharged outside the Santa Ana Watershed to replenish the local water supply, protect the Big Bear Valley environment, and strengthen the tourism industry that drives Big Bear’s recreation-based economy. Currently, about 800 million gallons of water, or half of Big Bear Valley’s annual water supply, is disposed of each year. Replenish Big Bear will recapture and treat this lost water to drinking water standards and use it to enhance water levels in the local groundwater basin, in Big Bear Lake, and in other area water bodies.
With additional funding, Replenish Big Bear hopes to complete this project sometime in 2025.