SSMP Annual Report Submitted to State Water Board

Salton Sea Management Program Update – March 5, 2021

Also: Recruiting Program Manager for SSMP; SSMP Team Welcomes a New Team Member

The California Natural Resources Agency has submitted its Annual Report on the Salton Sea Management Program (SSMP) to the State Water Resources Control Board. The report and the status of the SSMP will be the focus of a March 17 public workshop convened by the State Water Board. The workshop begins at 2 p.m.

The report summarizes progress in 2020 toward reducing exposed lakebed and creating habitat at the Salton Sea. Highlights include completing 755 acres of interim dust suppression projects and launching construction of the state’s first large-scale project to create habitat and cover exposed lakebed – the 4,110-acre Species Conservation Habitat (SCH) Project along the south shore of the Salton Sea.

The SCH, enabled by land access and water use agreements with the Imperial Irrigation District, will create a network of ponds with islands and areas of varying water depths to provide important fish and bird habitat and suppress dust emissions to improve regional air quality as the Salton Sea recedes.

The report also looks forward to upcoming projects and milestones, including work to evaluate the feasibility of water importation as a long-term strategy for restoration of the Salton Sea.

Since California is not a significant landowner in the region, collaboration with land-owning entities is critical to future projects. As a result, the SSMP is prioritizing work to secure land access to construct additional projects in strategic locations along the perimeter of the Salton Sea.

Recruiting Program Manager for SSMP

The SSMP is opening the hiring process for another new position. Through the California Department of Water Resources, the SSMP is seeking a program manager to be located at the Salton Sea. Before applying to the upcoming position, interested parties must pass the Program Manager 1 exam by following the instructions included in the exam bulletin. The cut-off date for the exam is March 31 at 4:30 p.m. Please contact Selection Services with any questions, (916) 653-4838.

SSMP Team Welcomes a New Team Member

The SSMP has added a new team member with Jerald Kellum, who will serve as a Fish and Wildlife Technician with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. He is based out of the Imperial Wildlife Area in Imperial County.

Kellum is a Marine Corps veteran, who completed two combat deployments in Iraq.

He worked with Caltrans in the San Diego and Imperial Valley desert region as a highway worker and equipment operator for more than a decade.

Kellum holds a bachelor’s degree in human services and is currently working on a master’s degree.

With expanded staffing, and the expected addition of more positions in 2021, the SSMP team is building capacity to meet the growing demands of existing projects and those planned for the future.


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