The Marin Municipal Water District
In 1912, the Marin Municipal Water District received its charter as the first municipal water district in California. Until then, water in central and southern Marin was provided by a number of small, unrelated companies, many of which were subsidiaries of real estate developers.
The movement toward a publicly owned and operated municipal water district started in 1911, when a group of civic-minded Marin County citizens asked Assemblyman George Harlan of Sausalito to propose legislation allowing for the creation of a water district. Harlan and the others were motivated by extraordinarily high water rates, inadequate and often irregular service and a desire to foster development within the county.
Since its inception, MMWD has acquired and incorporated into its system 26 small private water companies. Today, MMWD is a public agency that provides high-quality drinking water to 186,000 people in a 147-square-mile area of south & central Marin County.
- April 25, 2012 marked the 100-year anniversary of MMWD. The district commemorated the centennial throughout 2012 including a pictorial history book, Mount Tamalpais and the Marin Municipal Water District, by MMWD Director Jack Gibson. The book documents the district’s role in the preservation of the watershed and the district’s work to ensure a reliable supply of high-quality water for Marin.The book, from Arcadia Publishing, is available in local bookstores, at MMWD or may be ordered online. Proceeds benefit a fund to protect the Mt. Tamalpais Watershed.
Click here to download an index of the book generously provided by Fairfax Historical Society member William Sagar.
Click here to view a poster of historical highlights in MMWD's first 100 years.