Gomes v. Mendocino City Community Services DistrictAnnotate this Case
Gomes, a Mendocino County homeowner, sought to invalidate an ordinance of the Mendocino City Community Services District, limiting the quantity of groundwater he may extract from his property. He contends that the statute authorizing the district to establish groundwater-management programs did not authorize extraction limits but that, if it did, the District failed to adopt the present program in accordance with the procedures specified in the statute. The District was created pursuant to the 1987 enactment of Division 6 of the Water Code, part 2.7 (Wat. Code, 10700), which provides that the district “may, by ordinance, . . . establish programs for the management of groundwater resources.” The court of appeal concluded that the statute does authorize the imposition of extraction limitations but that the District did not adopt its program as the statute requires. The District acknowledged that the 2007 water shortage contingency plan enactments were not adopted pursuant to the statutory procedures; the court rejected its argument that the 1990 enactment of the underlying ordinance in compliance with those procedures was sufficient, and that the subsequent enactments were merely amendments of the original program that need not have been adopted in conformity with those procedures.