If you plan to enter or edit data using the WBT, please read the FAQs below. We also recommend you review the instructions and tutorials before you begin.
To edit a service area boundary for the water systems in your jurisdiction, you need to be registered as a tool user with the Water Boundary Tool. This is different from the registration required for individuals who only wish to use the data.
The WBT allows personnel from water systems, state primacy field operations districts, local primacy agencies (LPAs), other state agencies, and other qualified individuals to input and edit customer service area boundaries for drinking water systems throughout California. Users are only able to edit the water system(s) for which they are associated and approved.
To edit a service area boundary for the water systems in your jurisdiction, you need to be registered at the Water Boundary Tool first. Once you are registered, we recommend you review the Instructions and Tutorials. These will explain how to draw a boundary, prepare and upload a digital file, and how to manage your files (including adding valid to/from dates, marking completeness, denoting current boundaries, and deleting invalid boundaries). The instructions and tutorials also have information about request authorizations and, for district or LPAs, the boundary verification process. Reviewing the instructions and tutorials will prepare you to understand how data are managed in the WBT and maximize the utility of the data you are inputting into the system.
To register, create an account through the WBT's simple registration process. There are three types of WBT users:
- Individual water system (access to a single water system)
- District or LPA (access to all systems under within that district or LPA's jurisdiction)
- State (access to all water systems)
Please register for the appropriate user type based on the minimum access that you need. During registration, you are given the opportunity to select your desired water system or district/LPA. Once your registration is approved and you access your Water System List page, you then have the opportunity to register for additional districts, LPAs, and individual water systems.
Your registration request will be sent to the appropriate authorizing entity. You will receive an email notification when your registration has been approved. You may begin using the tool to upload, draw and/or edit your water system boundaries at that time. Because most users must be approved by a representative of the associated district or LPA, we cannot predict the timeframe for approval. If you have been waiting more than 72 hours for approval, please contact us.
Providing this information is not a security concern. You are only reporting the geographic area that your water system serves, and many water systems already provide information about customer service areas to the public. We are not collecting information on pipes, storage facilities, or other sensitive areas.
In general, it should take very little effort to input data if you have your water system boundary information in KML or zipped shapefile format.
It may take more time and effort if you:
- Plan to draw your water system boundary by hand
- Represent more than one water system, in which case you will need to input data for each system
- Are unsure of how your water system's service area is defined
Tracking California and our partners inputted data for the water systems for which we already had digital maps of boundaries. However, these may not be the most accurate or recent boundaries. Therefore, you are encouraged to register and edit these boundaries or create your own.
The tool was designed to maximize collaborative potential. Multiple boundaries can be saved for a single water system. These boundaries can be reviewed and edited by all users authorized for that water system, allowing multiple users to engage in a process to create the most accurate file.
Additionally, the tool was designed to support a collection of historical records (of past boundaries) and includes a way for users to designate dates for which that boundary is valid. If there are multiple records inputted for your water system, we encourage you to review these, assign Valid From dates for all boundaries that are or have been valid, indicate which of these boundaries is current, and retire any old/obsolete boundaries by entering a Valid To date for those records. Only delete records if they do not reflect a current or past boundary.
If you are viewing your water system boundary on the Water System Map Viewer and it doesn't match what you inputted, we recommend that you log in to the editing tool and look at all boundary records for that water system. The Map Viewer by default shows records marked as "current". If you have multiple boundary records for that water system, it is possible that the wrong record is marked as current. You can change this at any time from your user homepage. Please be aware that only one boundary per system can be marked as current at a time.
However, if you have previously saved a boundary, and the boundary that you are viewing while logged into the editing tool does not match what you submitted or isn't appearing, please contact us.