TUCSON (August 16, 2022) – Nearly 300 Tucson community members joined the City of Tucson for a community Town Hall meeting on Aug. 16, 2022, to learn about the City’s One Water 2100 Master Plan and discuss the City’s water resources. The event was held at the Tucson Convention Center and served as the kickoff for Tucson Water’s public engagement program to obtain input and increase awareness for the plan that will guide the water utility’s capital infrastructure planning conservation practices and policy decisions for the next eight decades.
The evening began with an open house for guests to ask questions directly to Tucson Water staff prior to the presentation. Opening remarks were provided by Mayor Regina Romero who sent a recorded message while she was away on business in Phoenix, as well as Vice Mayor Lane Santa Cruz. Both Romero and Santa Cruz thanked the guests and expressed the importance of public input during the development of the master plan.
The focus then turned to presentations and a panel discussion with Tucson Water’s Director John Kmiec and Lead Planner Jaimie Galayda, along with Assistant City Manager Tim Thomure and Wendy Broley, vice president at the environmental engineering firm Brown and Caldwell.
Attendees learned about the region’s current water resources and the driving elements within Tucson’s One Water 2100 Master Plan.
The Town Hall event, which was planned months ago, happened to occur on the same day that the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation announced new emergency water cuts for Arizona and other Colorado River Basin states. Under the new Tier 2 shortage conditions, Arizona’s annual Colorado River water apportionment will now be reduced by 21%.
With Tucson’s long culture of water conservation and water planning, Kmiec was able address the audience’s overwhelming concern of Tucson facing water supply shortages and changes. He pointed to the region’s long history of water conservation and water planning, which allows Tucson to save a third of its annual Colorado River allotment each year and has been able to help the aquifer in Avra Valley rebound over the past 20 years.
This same advanced preparation and conservation is at the heart of the vision for the One Water 2100 Master Plan.
Tucson Water is encouraging all Tucsonans to learn more and engage with the master planning process by visiting TucsonOneWater.com. Please take a brief survey and sign up for the One Water newsletter for updates and upcoming outreach events.