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Posted on: April 29, 2019

Yuba Water Agency helps fund new levee to further reduce flood risk, improve habitat

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A project to reduce the risk of flooding and improve habitat along the Bear River is moving forward with the help of funding from Yuba Water Agency.

The agency approved $2.1 million this week to help Reclamation District 817 design, construct and permit the 2,800-foot Bear River Setback Levee on the north bank of the Bear River, which is approximately two miles upstream of the Carlin Bridge along Pleasant Grove Road. 

As a result of historic seepage, the California Department of Water Resources identified the project as a critical erosion site.  

Once the project is complete, the setback levee will reduce flood risk for the Wheatland Basin, increase channel capacity, decrease erosion susceptibility, improve habitat, and provide improved maintenance access for inspections and operations during high-water events. 

“The most important thing about this work is that it will reduce the risk of flooding for the rural area southwest of the City of Wheatland, but it will also significantly improve habitat along the river, and make it much easier to access the levees for maintenance and monitoring purposes,” said Yuba Water Agency Director Gary Bradford. 

DWR will fund 90 percent of the $11 million project, and Yuba Water Agency will cover the 10 percent local cost-share, through a $1.1 million grant to improve public safety. An additional $1 million line-of-credit to assist with project operations and day-to-day cash flow was also approved by the agency’s board of directors. 

The Bear River Setback Levee project is expected to be complete in June 2023.

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