This week, the Alameda County Water District was awarded over $6.1 million in grant funding to help fund two local fish ladder projects that will play a critical role in restoring threatened steelhead trout to Alameda Creek. With approvals from two different agencies made on the very same day, the District is set to receive up to $825,000 from the California Coastal Conservancy and $5.36 million form the California Wildlife Conservation Board for the projects. Both grants are through programs authorized by the voter-approved Water Quality, Supply and Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2014 (Proposition 1).
Construction of the first fish ladder will begin later this spring, to be followed by a second fish ladder that will be built in partnership with the Alameda County Flood Control District. Once both ladders are complete, steelhead trout - a federally-listed, threatened species - will have a direct route to pass the District's rubber dams and a large flood control structure to gain access to the Alameda Creek watershed for the first time in 50 years.
The John Muir Chapter of Trout Unlimited is one of many non-profit groups including the Alameda Creek Alliance in the Alameda Creek Fisheries Restoration Workgroup and has been active in supporting the District's funding efforts.