Pajaro Compass Stakeholder Meetings

The Pajaro Compass Network meets twice annually, usually on the fourth Wednesday of April and October. Stakeholder Meetings change location throughout the Pajaro Watershed and highlight relevant and timely topics related to the six themes of the Pajaro Compass: Water Resources, Agriculture, Biodiversity, Carbon and Soil Health, Recreation and Community.

Stakeholder meetings provide an excellent networking opportunity for private landowners and land managers, community members, conservation groups, government agencies, and elected officials, to learn about one another’s activities and connect to advance the pace and scale of conservation in the watershed.

Network meetings are open to the public.

To receive email invitations and reminders about upcoming meetings, subscribe to the Pajaro Compass Network mailing list by sending a request to

Meeting Archive

Fall 2022 Network Virtual Meeting

Preparing for the Here, Now, and Future: Droughts and Floods in the Pajaro River Watershed

November 2, 2022

Zoom meeting |

This virtual meeting featured speakers from both the Upper and Lower Pajaro Watershed, presenting an overview of the watershed; an overview of how climate change will affect water dynamics; an outlook on groundwater levels and aquatic habitats in upper watershed streams; flood prediction, prevention, and water storage projects in the lower watershed; and the role of community engagement in green infrastructure planning.

Spring 2022 Network Virtual Meeting

Wildlife Connectivity Considerations in the Upper Pajaro River Watershed

May 4, 2022

Zoom meeting |

This virtual meeting focused on new research and project implementation around wildlife migration through the Upper Pajaro Watershed and surrounding regions. Among many considerations, highway permeability design, land protection, and habitat restoration can play key roles in assisting wildlife movement. Featured speakers discussed opportunities for tule elk reintroduction, enhanced wildlife connectivity between the southern Santa Cruz, Gabilan, and Diablo Mountain Ranges, and an update on the Highway 17 Wildlife Undercrossing at Laurel Curve.

Fall 2021 Network Meeting

Working Lands, Wetlands, and Conservation Partnerships in the Watsonville Slough System

October 27, 2021

Watsonville Slough Farm | Watsonville

Please join us at the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County’s Watsonville Slough Farm (WSF), a great example of how farming, restoration, and education opportunities complement each other. Speaker presentations will highlight the integration of conservation, agriculture, and education activities within the Watsonville Slough System, including talks on grassland restoration and prescribed burns, endangered species and wetland restoration, and practices compatible with surrounding grower operations and groundwater management. The fall stakeholder meeting will take place as an in-person outdoor event and will include tour stops with about 1.5 miles of total walking between stations. Participants are welcome to stay for informal networking and lunch after the program.

Spring 2021 Network Virtual Meeting

Habitat Conservation Planning: Balancing Growth and Economic Development with Natural Resource Conservation

April 28, 2021

Zoom meeting |

The Spring stakeholder meeting will take place virtually and focus on Habitat Conservation Plans (HCPs) and Natural Community Conservation Plans (NCCPs) and the role they play in helping communities balance growth and economic development with biological resource conservation. This topic builds on the land-use planning topic we covered at the October 2020 Stakeholder Meeting, with the goal of engaging diverse stakeholders including government staff and officials, ranchers, growers, private landowners, developers, conservation and open space organizations, and the broader Pajaro Watershed community to learn more about the conservation planning process. Our featured speakers will include agency staff who will explain what HCPs and NCCPs are, as well as representatives from counties outside the Pajaro River watershed with existing plans who will describe the multiple benefits HCPs and NCCPs provide, how they tie into conservation practices like easements and restoration, and what the plan implementation process entails. Staff from the San Benito County Resource Management Agency will also share information about the County’s new HCP/NCCP effort and their upcoming plans for soliciting stakeholder participation and input. The meeting will include panel presentations and question and answer sessions.

Fall 2020 Network Virtual Meeting

Regional Land-Use Planning: Shaping Growth and Community Character in the Upper Pajaro Watershed

October 28, 2020

Zoom meeting |

In this 90-minute virtual meeting, we will explore the theme of land-use planning, especially how it shapes the upper Pajaro River watershed. Through presentations and Q&A discussion with staff from the cities of San Juan Bautista and Hollister, and the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) of San Benito County, we'll specifically focus on questions about city general planning, and how that interacts with county planning. For example, how are different land uses (e.g. housing, industrial, transportation, agricultural, open space) balanced in a broad way through city General Plans, as well as through project-specific discretionary permitting? How do General Plans envision the future balance between agricultural and more urban land uses as the areas around cities continue to develop? How does the process of annexation/incorporation of land into cities occur? And what are the opportunities for public involvement in the planning and permitting processes?

Spring 2020 Network Meeting

April 22 meeting postponed.

April 22, 2020

Veteran’s Memorial Building | Hollister

Due to the corona virus outbreak, and our interests in following various public health guidelines and exercising an abundance of caution, we are postponing the April 22 stakeholder meeting until a later safer time. When we know more, we will reach out with new plans. Thanks, and take care.


Fall 2019 Network Meeting

Groundwater Management in the Pajaro Valley

November 4, 2019

City of Watsonville Community Room | Watsonville

For its Fall 2019 meeting on Monday, Nov. 4, 1:00-4:00 pm, the Pajaro Compass Network will be joining with the Community Water Dialogue to learn more about groundwater management in the Pajaro Valley. Brian Lockwood, General Manager of PV Water, will provide an update on the status of the PV groundwater basin and the implementation of the PV Water Basin Management Plan. In addition, Dr. Andy Fisher, Professor at UCSC, will talk about managed aquifer recharge in the Valley.

Spring 2019 Network Meeting

One Watershed, Many Perspectives: Partnerships in the Pajaro

April 24, 2019

City of Watsonville Community Room | Watsonville

The Spring Stakeholder Meeting focused on watershed resource and restoration partnerships for water quality, flood control, and habitat. A panel of speakers represented projects in both the upper and lower watershed. Following a networking lunch (food provided), the Pajaro Valley Water Management Agency led a tour of the Watsonville Wastewater Plant.

Fall 2018 Network Meeting

Tools for Conserving Working Lands: Easements, Mitigation, and Other Strategies

October 24, 2018

Veteran’s Memorial Building | Hollister

The Fall Stakeholder Meeting was geared toward owners and managers of working ranches and farms who are looking for ways to keep their land intact and productive for future generations. A panel of landowners shared their experiences with easements and other strategies for successful ranch succession, and a second panel of speakers described the tools and programs available for working lands conservation through their organizations and agencies.


Spring 2018 Field Day and Network Meeting

Ranching for Resiliency: Grazing for a Healthy Watershed and the Bottom Line

April 24, 2018

Gabilan Ranch | San Juan Bautista

The goal for this field day was to provide a forum for lively discussion about grazing for the benefit of people, animals, and the land, while sharing a model for collaboration among grazers, landowners, and conservation partners. In addition to the ranch owners and ranch manager, speakers included ecologists and soil scientists from The Nature Conservancy and Point Blue Conservation Science’s Rangeland Monitoring Network.

Fall 2017 Network Meeting

October 24, 2017

Veteran’s Memorial Building | Hollister

This meeting featured guest speakers on the Proposed Pacheco Reservoir Expansion and the California Rangeland Conservation Coalition.

Spring 2017 Network Meeting

April 19, 2017

Veteran’s Memorial Building | Hollister

This meeting featured guest speakers on the Salinas River Channel Maintenance Program and Prop 1 Funding Opportunities.


Fall 2016 Network Meeting

October 26, 2016

Veteran’s Memorial Building | Hollister

This meeting featured guest speakers on the Sustainable Agriculture Lands Conservation (SALC) program and Regional Conservation Investment Strategy (RCIS) legislation.


Network Launch Meeting

June 23, 2016

Veteran’s Memorial Building | Hollister