Two student artists representing the Otay Water District are among the 37 Southern California students whose artwork will appear in the 2023 “Water Is Life” Student Art Calendar. Photo: MWD student artwork

Otay Water District Calls On Student Artists for Contest Entries

The Otay Water District calls on student artists in its service area to unleash their creativity in its annual Student Poster Contest. All students in district schools from kindergarten to 12th grade are invited to illustrate a new theme for the 2023 contest – “Being water wise is …”

Otay Water District’s annual educational program encourages students to create a poster demonstrating their water awareness. Water conservation or stewardship should be reflected in the artwork.

First place in 2022 in the high school category: Michael Armenion, eleventh grade, Otay Ranch High School. Photo: Otay Water District Otay Poster Contest

First place in 2022 in the high school category: Michael Armenion, eleventh grade, Otay Ranch High School. Photo: Otay Water District

Suggested examples include turning off the water while brushing your teeth, taking short showers, protecting water from pollution, or collecting rainwater in buckets and reusing it to water plants.

“This year’s theme ‘Being water wise is…’ invites students to share the many ways they can use water efficiently inside and outside their homes or schools,” said Eileen Salmeron, communications assistant and poster contest coordinator for the Otay Water District.

“Because our region and the state have faced many droughts, it is vital that younger generations start making water efficiency their way of life.”

Prizes Awarded In Three Categories

The contest features three categories: elementary, middle, and high school. First- and second-place winners from each category will win a $50-$75 gift card, certificate, art kit, and goodie bag. The District will also feature the winners in promotional materials and hold a recognition event at a monthly board meeting later this summer.

Selected posters will also be entered in a second contest held by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. MWD will select artwork to feature in its 2024 student art calendar.

First place, middle school: Khilee Haull, seventh grade, Hillsdale Middle School. Otay poster contest

First place, middle school: Khilee Haull, seventh grade, Hillsdale Middle School. Photo: Otay Water District

Two students from the Otay Water District have their artwork featured in the 2023 MWD calendar. Seventh grader Khilee Haull at Hillsdale Middle School won first place in the 2022 Otay Water District contest.

Second place, elementary school: Christian-Kealoha Rogacion, fifth grade, Thurgood Marshall Elementary School. Photo: Otay Water District

Second place, elementary school: Christian-Kealoha Rogacion, fifth grade, Thurgood Marshall Elementary School. Photo: Otay Water District

Fifth grader Christian-Kealoha Rogacion at Thurgood Marshall Elementary School won second place in the 2022 Otay WD elementary school category.

The deadline to enter Otay’s contest is Friday, June 2, 2023. Hard-copy or digital entries are eligible.

Participants must attend a school within the water district’s service area and follow the contest guidelines at

California Emerges as Big Winner in Colorado River Water Deal

Monday’s historic Colorado River agreement represents a big win for California, which only months ago was embroiled in a bitter feud with Arizona, Nevada and four other Western states over how to dramatically reduce their use of water supplies in the shrinking river. The proposition, which came after months of tense negotiations, would see the three states in the Colorado’s lower basin conserve about 3 million acre-feet of water from the river by 2026 — a 14% reduction across the Southwest that amounts to only about half of what could have been imposed by the federal government had the states not come to an accord.

IID GM Comments Lower Basin Plan for Colorado River & Lake Mead Water Conservation

Imperial Irrigation District (IID) General Manager Henry Martinez issued a statement Monday, May 22, commenting on the announcement made earlier today by the Colorado River Board of California regarding the submission of a Lower Basin Plan to Reclamation for analysis by representatives of the seven Colorado River Basin States. The Lower Basin Plan proposes to conserve 3 million acre-feet of Colorado River water through 2026, with at least 1.5 million acre-feet of that total being conserved by the end of calendar year 2024.

Colorado River Deal: What Does It Mean for California?

After nearly a year of intense negotiations, California, Nevada and Arizona reached a historic agreement today to use less water from the overdrafted Colorado River over the next three years. The states agreed to give up 3 million acre-feet of river water through 2026 — about 13% of the amount they receive. In exchange, farmers and other water users will receive compensation from the federal government.

Opinion: Colorado River Water Fight that Pit California Against the West May Evaporate — For Now

When California and six other Western states failed to meet a Jan. 31 federal deadline for deciding how to allocate water from the drought-ravaged Colorado River that supplies drinking water to 40 million people — 1 in 8 Americans — it was the Golden State that called the others all wet.

Citing the labyrinthine world of vested water rights, which guarantees it the most water from the 1,450-mile-long river, California objected to a plan backed by the other states — Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico and Utah — on the grounds it should not have to bear an equal share of the federal government’s call for an annual reduction in Colorado River water of at least 15 percent.

Report Urges Metropolitan Water District to Abandon Newsom’s $16-Billion Delta Tunnel Plan

Gov. Gavin Newsom and his administration have touted plans to build a tunnel to transport water beneath the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, saying the project would modernize California’s water infrastructure and help the state adapt to climate change.

But an advocacy group is urging the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California to abandon the $16-billion project, saying it doesn’t make financial sense for the state’s largest urban water agency.

Water Authority Testifies on California’s Efforts to Support the Colorado River

During state Assembly testimony on Tuesday, May 2, San Diego County Water Authority General Manager Sandra L. Kerl highlighted the steps taken by the Water Authority and partner water agencies across California to support the Colorado River in the era of climate change.

MWD Awards Contract to Rehabilitate Skinner Treatment Plant Ozone Contactor Walls

The walls of the ozone contactors at the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California’s Robert A. Skinner Water Treatment Plant are experiencing cracks, and the March 14 MWD board meeting included the award of a contract to rehabilitate the structure walls of two of the contactors.

‘Nature Gave Us a Lifeline’: Southern California Refills Largest Reservoir After Wet Winter

Following a series of winter storms that eased drought conditions across the state, Southern Californians celebrated a sight nobody has seen for several punishing years: water rushing into Diamond Valley Lake.

The massive reservoir — the largest in Southern California — was considerably drained during the state’s driest three years on record, with nearly half of the lake’s supply used to bolster minuscule allocations from state water providers.

Opinion: Western Water Crisis Solutions Inevitably End With a Lot Less for California Farms

A modest proposal for western water: Turn off the spigot to the Imperial Valley and let the farms go fallow. In return, provide a water future for Arizona, Nevada and Southern California.

Sure, there would be a price to pay. California’s Imperial Valley, which sits in the southeastern corner of the state, bordered by Arizona and Mexico, produces alfalfa, lettuce, corn and sugar beets, among other crops. It’s home to more than 300,000 head of cattle. Cutting off the water would end all of that, along with the livelihoods of the farmers and ranchers who produce it and the communities that depend on it.