Starting May 2023, a number of property owners may receive a legal notice via mail from JND Legal Administration concerning litigation about the Oxnard Plain Groundwater Basin and the Pleasant Valley Groundwater Basin (collectively, OPV Groundwater Basins).
The case is titled “OPV Coalition, et al., v. Fox Canyon Groundwater Management Agency, et al., Santa Barbara Superior Court Case No. VENCI00555357” and was brought forward by a group of agricultural landowners in Ventura County.
Because of state law requirements, all property owners who own land overlying groundwater basins must receive a notice to remain informed of all litigation regarding groundwater rights. Legal notices regarding this case were issued to all property owners identified in the groundwater basin and not as Ventura Water customers.
The legal case, among other things, seeks to determine water rights within the OPV Groundwater Basins including how much groundwater can be used by property owners and groundwater users.
The City of San Buenaventura (Ventura) is participating in the case to preserve the City’s groundwater pumping rights in the Oxnard Plain Groundwater Basin on behalf of its water customers. To the extent you are a Ventura Water customer and using water from the City, your rights to such water are being represented by the City and you do not need to participate in the litigation to maintain the ability to be served by the City of Ventura and its Ventura Water Department.
Property owners with an existing well on their property (independent of the City), or others who want to preserve a potential right to pump water in the future on their land, should obtain legal advice from an attorney as those rights may be impacted by this lawsuit.
You may become a party participating in this lawsuit by:
1. Filing an Answer to the Adjudication Complaint included with the notice, OR
2. Filing an appropriate request to become a plaintiff in the lawsuit. There is a filing fee required to file an answer or to become a plaintiff.
If you have any questions regarding this matter, you should consult an attorney.
Click below to see the Notice.