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Bipartisan effort urges quick capture of water for ag


Table of Contents:

  • Bipartisan effort urges quick capture of water for ag
  • Some relief
  • Late-season storms offer chance to capture water for California agriculture


With some late-season rain and snow forecast in the coming week for California a bipartisan call by key federal lawmakers is welcome and appreciated.

A letter signed Thursday by U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein and Representatives Jim Costa, Kevin McCarthy, David Valadao, Ken Calvert, Jeff Denham and Devin Nunes urges Interior Secretary Sally Jewell and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker to immediately evaluate operating criteria on the Central Valley Project and State Water Project to capture as much water as falls on California over the next week.

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The action is particularly noteworthy since the political divide in this matter has been wide. Nunes, McCarthy and House Speaker John Boehner made a trip to Bakersfield to look at dry conditions without a Democrat to be seen, and about a week later President Obama, without a Republican lawmaker in sight, toured the heart of the Central Valley’s growing region. The media attention these trips drew apparently helped.

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Now both sides of the aisle are on the same letter calling for immediate attention. That’s what we’ve wanted all along: a joint effort regardless of party stripe to do the right thing.

One “right thing” would be to attempt to fill San Luis Reservoir with these increased flows through the Delta as they come available. There’s a tight balancing act to keep salt water away from Delta pumps, and agriculture completely understands that concern and challenge.

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