Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced that the Bureau of Reclamation’s Mid-Pacific Region has awarded a $14.6 million contract under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) for construction of the Delta-Mendota Canal/California Aqueduct Intertie Pumping Plant and Pipeline (Intertie).

“These stimulus funds will not only help the economy and provide jobs, but also will contribute to the actions being taken to help alleviate California’s water crisis,” said Salazar. “The intertie adds flexibility through the use of existing facilities while increasing the reliability of water projects in California’s Central Valley.”

With this ARRA award, reclamation is initiating the construction phase of the project. The $14.6 million award was issued to Shimmick Construction of Oakland, Calif., for building a pumping station and underground pipeline connection, installing four pumps and motors and building an electrical switchyard. Construction is expected to begin this fall and be completed by early 2012.

When completed, the intertie will connect the Delta-Mendota Canal (DMC) and the California Aqueduct to relieve DMC conveyance limitations, allow for maintenance and repair activities, and provide the flexibility to respond to Central Valley Project and State Water Project emergency water operations. The project was identified as a proposed action in the August 2000 CALFED Bay-Delta Program. The new facility will be located between the DMC and California Aqueduct approximately five miles west of Tracy, Calif.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act enacted in 2009 gave $3 billion to the Department of the Interior.