Flood Control Zone 9 was formed in the early 1950s to provide funding for construction and maintenance of regional drainage infrastructure in the Pinole Creek watershed. It initially provided, from a portion of the ad valorem property tax, local matching funding for a joint District / Army Corps of Engineers project extending from the mouth of the creek up to Highway 80.
Prior to the passage of Proposition 13 in 1978, Zone Boards, which consisted of representatives from the watersheds, adjusted the tax rates of each Flood Control Zone annually. When Proposition 13 came around, several of the zone facilities were constructed, maintenance was up to date and there was enough money in the funds to set the tax rate very low or at zero. Upon passage, Proposition 13 froze those tax rates, in effect shutting off the tax revenue needed to adequately fund the maintenance of the Zones’ flood control facilities.
Special District Augmentation Fund
The State responded by setting up the Special District Augmentation Fund. This fund provided assistance for many years until the Fund was removed from the State budget during a State budget crisis. Today the several Zones remain severely underfunded. The District is actively seeking ways to compensate for lack of funding for maintenance.
In the Pinole Creek Watershed, the District has partnered with the City of Pinole on the Pinole Creek Demonstration Project that seeks to bring improved ecological habitat, flood protection and recreational opportunities to the communities of Pinole and Hercules. The project limits currently extend from the mouth of the creek up to Orleans Drive, though those limits are subject to change depending on available funding.