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Drought assistance

Drought assistance

Emergency drinking water

Are you having trouble getting water in your home? The State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) has help available for households with water shortages.

Agua potable de emergencia

¿Tiene dificultades para tener agua en su casa? La Junta Estatal del Agua (SWRCB) tiene ayuda para hogares que carecen de agua.

Funding programs

Immediate drought relief

In response to current drought conditions, the California Legislature authorized $500 million for the California Department of Water Resources to provide funding for interim or immediate relief. Read more at DWR’s Drought Funding page.

Drought relief for small communities and Tribes

The Small Community Drought Relief Program helps communities and eligible Tribes that are not served by an urban water supplier. We define this as one that supplies at least 3,000 connections or 3,000 acre-feet of water per year. Small community water systems and Tribes under drought emergency should apply as soon as possible. Submit applications or questions to smallcommunitydrought@water.ca.gov.

Want to see what funding this program brought to your area in 2021? See the map at 2021 DWR Drought Program Funding.

Water efficiency on farms and ranches

The State Water Efficiency and Enhancement Program (SWEEP) is a program for California farmers and ranchers. It funds projects that save water by increasing the efficiency of irrigation systems. Get more details and apply at CDFA’s SWEEP webpage.

Drought relief for urban or disadvantaged communities and Tribal lands

The Urban/Multibenefit Drought Relief Grant Program offers financial help to drought relief projects that:

  • Impact health and human safety
  • Impact fish and wildlife
  • Restore water to those threatened with water loss or contamination

Funding is available for Tribes, public agencies, public utilities, special districts, non-profit organizations, mutual water companies, colleges, and regional water management groups. Interested parties can submit applications or questions to urbandrought@water.ca.gov.

Drinking water funding

For drinking water systems or individual households, the State Water Board funds projects that address drought-related urgent drinking water needs or long-term resilience. We partner with public agencies, tribal governments, water systems, and non-profit organizations to develop and manage these projects, and these entities may be eligible to receive funding for the support they provide. Read more at the State Water Board’s Drought Funding page.

Other help