Permanent Special Agricultural Water Rate (PSAWR) program

Eligibility requirements are as follows;


To qualify for the PSAWR program after January 1, 2021, the property owner must be registered with one of the four Growers Programs below:

San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board

  • General Ag Order Enrollment List
    • How to enroll - Click on "Instructions for Enrolling" link
    • For more information and assistance applying for General Ag Orders, click here to view San Diego Region Irrigated Lands Group (SDRILG) factsheet, or call SDRILG at 760-745-2215
    • Agricultural Water Customers are required to participate in the General Agricultural Orders issued by the San Diego Regional Water Board. Participation may be on an individual basis or through a Third-Party Group on your behalf. Information on this requirement may be found at:

County of San Diego

  • Grower’s List
    • Certification to apply pesticides
    • To get an Operator Identification Number (OPID) to get on the Grower's List call (858) 694-8980 and ask to speak with a pesticide inspector or email
  • Active Certified Producers
    • A Certified Producer is a farmer who has been certified by the AWM to sell in Certified Farmers’ Markets (CFMs)
    • Click on – “Download a Certified Producer Application” link
    • Contact Number: 858-694-2739
  • Organic Producers
    • Grown locally – sold to wholesalers who sell to markets across US
    • Portion sold to local restaurants and natural food stores
    • Also sell directly to public through produce stands, Certified Farmers’ Markets throughout the county of SD and Community Supported Agriculture programs.
    • Click on – “Organic Registration Information & Application” link
    • Contact Number: 858-694-2739

If you are unsure which Grower's List you qualify for, a good resource to contact is the San Diego County Farm Bureau at 760-745-3023.

The PSAWR program follows the guidelines provided by the San Diego County Water Authority. Agricultural production shall mean the growing or raising, in conformity with recognized practices of husbandry, for the purpose of commerce, trade or industry, of agricultural, horticultural or floricultural products produced for human consumption or the market.

Farmers and growers who participate in the new permanent program will receive a lower level of water service during a supply allocation from the Metropolitan Water District (MWD) or other water supply shortages or emergencies. That allows the Water Authority to reallocate those supplies to municipal and commercial/industrial (M&I) customers who pay for full water service and reliability benefits. In exchange, participating farmers do not pay the supply rate differential between the Water Authority’s melded water rate and Metropolitan’s Tier 1 water rate, as well as being exempt from paying fixed water storage and supply reliability charges.

Backflow Device

Backflow Device Information:

A backflow device must be installed at the meter.  Backflow device will need to be tested annually.

Click here to review our Backflow web page for more information. 


The Residential Agricultural Water Program is for smaller groves on a residential property. 

Property must be a minimum of .75 acres with one-half acre in production, not including residential landscaping.

A backflow device must be installed at the meter.  Backflow device will need to be checked annually.

Proof of agricultural activity must be provided upon request.  Proof can be in the form of sales or picking receipts, a copy of your Schedule F (Profit or Loss from Farming) of most recent tax return, or a donation receipt from a 501(C)3 Charity. 

Note: The County Water Authority Agricultural program is developed by the San Diego County Water Authority and administered by the City of Escondido, Utilities Administration team.  The Residential Agricultural program, offered by the City of Escondido to it's customers, is also administered through the Utilities Administration team.  They can be reached at 760-839-4662.