The final FY '06 Energy and Water Conference Report approved today by House-Senate conferees includes $40.9 million to strengthen California levees and flood control.
"This funding will help us create the blueprints we need for the most critical levee repairs and storage expansion projects," Chairman Richard Pombo said. "This is just the beginning, obviously, but we are off to a good start. I would like to thank Senator Feinstein for her tireless efforts to make sure the Delta levees are secured as soon as humanly possible. With her leadership in the Senate, Californians can be confident the job will get done."
"A major earthquake in Sacramento or the Bay Delta is a nightmare scenario for California," Sen. Dianne Feinstein said. "The earthquake damage would be bad enough. But if it were to weaken the levees, it would cause terrible flooding, kill thousands of people, jeopardize the drinking water for 23 million people, and cost billions. That's why we've got to act now. The funding approved today is a down payment on improving Sacramento-area flood control, but millions more is needed. But we will not give up the fight. We will look for every way possible to obtain the funding that is needed so that catastrophic flooding can be averted."
"I am pleased Sacramento received record funding for our flood control efforts - it is recognition that we are better off making an investment in protection rather than funding a clean up," Rep. Doris Matsui said. "However, this is only the beginning and we must continue our commitment to flood control funding to ensure Sacramento is no longer the 'most at-risk river city in the nation."
Here is how the funding appropriations will be spent:
— $15 million for American River Watershed -- Folsom Dam Mini Raise.
— $9.555 million for American River Watershed -- Folsom Dam Modifications.
— $4.405 million for American River Watershed -- Common Features.
— $3.75 million for South Sacramento County Streams.
— $6.3 million for Sacramento River Bank Protection.
— $1.2 million for the Yuba River Basin.
— $500,000 for short-term Delta levee assessment. (CALFED 180-day study)
— $250,000 for a Delta Islands and levee feasibility study.
The bill also includes $37 million for CALFED projects. Congress approved legislation sponsored by Senator Feinstein and Chairman Pombo authorizing $395 million over six years for CALFED last year. The FY '06 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill provides a total of $37 million for the Bureau of Reclamation's California Bay-Delta Restoration Account.