From Paper to the Real World: Stopping Illegal Water Diversions in California

Elliott Rector, Legal Intern, EDF

On June 29, the California State Assembly Water, Parks, and Wildlife Committee approved SB 565, an encouraging first step towards reforming the illegal use and diversion of water in California. This important bill will next be taken up in the Appropriations Committee, possibly next week.

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TragerWaterReport Comment: The best way to reduce the diversion of water is to privatize all water. That way, people would guard their supplies. In a similar fashion, people who own their own homes take care of them much better than, say, people forced to live in government housing, such as the infamous Cabrini Green in Chicago.

Legislation takes shape to postpone water bond

Lawmakers are set to vote next week on a set of bills that would move the $11.1 billion water bond to the 2012 general election ballot.

Two bills were amended Thursday in the Senate to push Proposition 18, currently slated for the Nov. 2 election, to the election on Nov. 6, 2012.

Assembly Bill 1265, by Assemblywoman Anna Caballero, D-Salinas, and Assemblyman Kevin Jeffries, R-Lake Elsinore, delays the water bond vote. A second bill, AB 1260, by Assemblywoman Jean Fuller, R-Bakersfield, would delay the terms for appointees to the California Water Commission, the body tasked with allocating some of the bond’s funds.

Read more: http://blogs.sacbee.com/capitolalertlatest/2010/08/trost.html#ixzz0vrKGAcoI

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Actually, they should keep the bond on the ballot so voters can wipe it out.

Delta water users dismiss call for steep cutbacks

SACRAMENTO — A powerful state board on Tuesday for the first time adopted criteria defining how much water must flow through the Delta to the Bay to maintain a healthy ecosystem.

The criteria, while nonbinding, are based on findings that showed the state’s farms and cities are using far too much Delta water, results that could shift how policymakers balance the needs of the environment and the state’s farms and cities.

“This is something that some of us have been awaiting for more than two decades,” said Zeke Grader, executive director of a trade group for commercial salmon fishermen, the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations.

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Cal Senate hearing next week on Delta water report

The California Senate Select Committee on Delta Conservation, Conveyance and Governance, chaired by Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, on Monday will listen to and question the scientists who wrote a report that says less water should be diverted from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta if the estuary is to be restored.

It’s the first hearing by lawmakers since the State Water Control Board adopted a staff report on water flows in the Delta, the largest estuary on the West Coast of the Western Hemisphere – and the major water source for 23 million Californians.

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