There will be a formal announcement Monday, but the Community Services District confirms what a RanchoMurieta.com member posted Saturday: A ditch construction project is complete, and Cosumnes River water is flowing once again into Laguna Joaquin.
Ed Crouse, the CSD's interim general manager, said Sunday afternoon that the Cosumnes Irrigation Ditch, which carries Cosumnes River water to ranchers and to Laguna Joaquin, had been open for more than 24 hours and was already making a significant contribution to the level of Laguna Joaquin.
Crouse said the flow was started at 8 or 9 a.m. Saturday. He walked the length of the ditch Sunday and saw no spillage and no leakage from the pipe that was installed to carry the ditch water past the Murieta Gardens commercial development. He saw water reaching the diversion box near the Country Store, he said, and flowing from there to ranchers downstream and up to Laguna Joaquin.
"I can't confirm it, but my impression is we've raised the level of Laguna Joaquin about nine inches in 24 hours," he said. He estimated it will take about another 27 inches to get the lake to its proper level.
TNT Construction, owned by neighbor Josh Twist, came in for special kudos from Crouse. "His crew stayed out the last day, Friday, until about midnight to make sure the valves were in place and operating," Crouse said.
Neighbor Roger Brandt posted Saturday evening that the ditch had begun feeding Laguna Joaquin once again.
Crouse said he made the call to wait 24 hours to check the work to make sure it was done satisfactorily, and then to announce the completion on Monday. Otherwise, he said, he would have had to announce they were shutting off the flow to do further work.
The closing of the ditch for much of the summer is thought to have been a factor in the fish kill that hit Laguna Joaquin 10 days ago.