Reasons for Exemption
The Project is exempt under CEQA Guideline §15301, known as the Class One categorical exemption, which applies to activities that involve the operation, repair, maintenance, permitting, leasing, licensing, or minor alteration of existing public or private structures, facilities, mechanical equipment, or topographical features. The Project falls within this exemption because it is the repair and minor alteration of the district's existing diversion and conveyance structure, and involves negligible or no expansion of use beyond that existing at the time of the district's determination. The Project is also exempt under CEQA Guideline § 15301, which exempts facilities used to provide public utilities services and small additions. Guideline §15301 (b), (e). Guideline §15301 specifies that the listed examples are not "all-inclusive" and that the "key consideration" in determining whether the exemption applies is whether the project involves "negligible or no expansion of an existing use." The proposed project involves the reconstruction of existing public utilities services with no expansion of existing use.
The Project is also exempt under CEQA Guideline §15302, known as the Class 2 categorical exemption, because it consists of the replacement or reconstruction of existing structures and facilities where the new structure is located on the same site as the structure replaced and will have substantially the same purpose and capacity as the replaced structure. Among other things, the exemption covers the "replacement or reconstruction of existing utility systems and/or facilities involving negligible or no expansion of capacity." Guideline §15302(c).